Potential Will Solutions
The following are a few case studies for different situations. They are merely examples of what can be done and do not constitute as advice. Every will we write is bespoke to our client’s objectives.
Single person with no dependants
Jack is single with no dependants. He wishes to pass his estate to his nephews and nieces.
He could either make a will in favour of his nephews and nieces as an absolute gift. Alternatively could make a will passing everything to a trust. The trust can offer protection against bankruptcy or divorce.
Single person leaving to elderly parents then to siblings
Margery’s estate is worth £300,000 would like this to pass to her parents for their enjoyment during their lifetime. Beyond their lifetime she would wish everything to pass to her siblings.
If she made an absolute gift to her parents and they required care, the estate received from Margery would be means tested and possibly swallowed before reaching her siblings. They may not require care and the estate received from Margery will be added to her parents estate which could create an Inheritance Tax issue when passing to Margery’s siblings.
Alternatively, it is possible that Margery could set up a will passing her estate to a trust for the benefit of her parents and siblings. The trust could lend the parents capital or make income payments to them. There is no requirement for the parents to pay interest during their lifetime. On their demise the trust beneficiaries will be Margery’s siblings who could either maintain the trust to retain wealth within the family or distribute as they think fit.
Single person with children
By passing your estate to your children it will form part of their estate. Should they face hostile creditors such as bankruptcy, divorce or require care, the estate passed to them might be diluted. It maybe the case that they are unable to look after money themselves.
Alternatively, parents can make a will by passing everything to a trust for the benefit of their children and their descendants. Your children can have the use of trust property without it forming part of their estate thereby offering protection against hostile creditors.
Married without children
In this case there may be no next generation who you wish to protect. Therefore Wills passing all to my surviving spouse absolutely and he or she fails to survive , to various individuals or Charities might be the solution.
In some cases couples may wish to protect the next generation of beneficiaries (e.g. nieces and nephews) for which you could consider trusts.
Married with children
You may own your home with capital and may wish to pass everything to your spouse and when he or she passes everything to pass to your children.
You may wish set up a will that passes all to my spouse and, if he or she fails to survive, everything to my children type will.
If you have an estate that you wish to protect for the next generation, you could consider the following to achieve all to spouse and then to children:
Everything to a trust (after specific gifts) for the benefit of my spouse. The survivor has the full use of the trust during his or her lifetime and is normally a trustee. Should he/she require care the trust property is protected. On the death of the survivor, the trust passes to your children or a trust for your children and not a future spouse. A trust for your children can provide them with protection against hostile creditors.
In short, this will structure provides options after your death that a will that simple “all to spouse will” cannot provide.