Just where would you stand if your spouse/civil partner died without having made a Will…

Would you really want to have the worry and concern of not knowing what you would be entitled to from your spouse’s estate if he/she died without making a Will......Surely not? 

Losing a loved one is such an emotionally difficult time and having the added burden of trying to establish where you would end up financially after losing that loved one can add  immense pressure that you could well do without when you are grieving.

The present Intestacy Rules, the rules which take effect if someone dies without making a Will, will be changing from 1st October 2014 following new legislation. 

A surviving spouse or civil partner will be entitled to the Statutory Legacy which presently stands at the first £250000 of their deceased partners estate, with any remaining estate divided half outright to the surviving spouse/civil partner and half to the children in equal shares at the age of 18. 

If there are no children of the marriage or civil partnership then the surviving spouse/civil partner will take the whole estate outright. 

Indeed, the Statutory Legacy that a surviving spouse is entitled to where there are surviving children has stood at the first £250000 of the estate since 1 February 2009. Whilst the figure has not been raised in the new legislation to cover inflation,  the intention is that it will now be reviewed more frequently.  

These provisions simplify the present Intestacy Law which provides for parents or siblings of the deceased to have a share of the estate where there are no children but nevertheless still leave a potential for problems to arise especially where there is complicated second/third marriage family scenarios. 

Even more complex, is the scenario of couples living together, as at present the Intestacy Law makes no formal provision for unmarried partners to inherit. This means that making a claim against the estate from The Inheritance (Provisions for Family and Dependants) Act is the only option which can be costly, lengthy and very stressful without any guarantees of success. 

Do not leave such important matters to chance, come along and have a free half hour appointment to find out your position to ensure that you can then consider fully what provisions you want or need to put in place to give you and your family peace of mind.

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