Making a Will means you can be sure that your estate will pass to your loved ones in the way that you want. As well as providing for them in the future, it can also be a source of reassurance to them and can prevent disagreements from arising.
At Thornton Jones, Wills solicitors in North Yorkshire, we can discuss your options with you and draw up a Will that deals with your assets as you choose as well as protecting your estate.
We have extensive experience in Will writing, including dealing with complex family structures and large or complicated estates. Our services include:
- Taking your instructions, discussing your options with you and drafting your Will
- Estate planning advice
- Advice in respect of provision for minors or vulnerable dependants
- Mirror Wills
- Living Wills
- Will trusts
- Lasting Powers of Attorney
- Reviewing and updating your Will, for example, on marriage or change of circumstances
- Will disputes
Our team are friendly and approachable and will work with you to identify the best way for you to pass on your estate and take care of your family.
Speak to our North Yorkshire Wills solicitors to see how we can help you plan for the future.
Plan your journey
If you would like to visit our Sherburn in Elmet office from Tadcaster, you can plan your journey here. Sherburn in Elmet is 6 miles or 11 minutes’ drive from Tadcaster.
How our Wills solicitors near Tadcaster can help you
What to include in your Will
When making your Will, you need to include all of your assets and personal possessions. You can leave these to chosen individuals either outright or in trust. If you are leaving money or property to minor children or adults who are not able to manage your own affairs, you can put the assets in trust so that a trustee can look after them.
Appointing people in your Will
There are a number of appointments you can make in your Will. Firstly, you will need to choose one or more executors. This is the person who will be responsible for dealing with the administration of your estate when the time comes.
The role can be time-consuming and fairly complex, so you should think carefully about whom you believe will be able to deal with it. It is usually recommended to choose someone younger than you. You can also name a replacement executor who will be able to act if your first choice is not able or willing to take on the task when the time comes.
If you do not have anyone suitable, you can appoint a professional executor, usually an experienced probate solicitor, to act in this capacity.
If your children are under 18, you can use your Will to appoint a guardian or guardians to care for them. It is important to do this as, if you do not, it will be for the court to choose who they will live with.
You may also want to create a trust in your Will, leaving money to be distributed to beneficiaries as the trustees see fit to pay for matters, such as their care and education. You will need to appoint one or more trustees to deal with the trust administration.
We can discuss the appointments you need to make with you and include the necessary clauses in your Will, giving those appointed the authority to act.
Using your Will to plan your estate
You can use your Will to ensure that your estate is protected for the future. For example, there is a risk that if you leave everything to your spouse or partner, then they may leave their estate to someone you would not have chosen or need to use all of the money to fund care home fees.
We can ensure that your assets are protected so that they cannot be used in a way that you would not want. It is possible to leave your spouse or partner a life interest in your property or capital so that they could live in your shared home for the rest of their lives, but once they leave, your share would pass to your choice of beneficiary.
We will also discuss Inheritance Tax with you and the possibility of reducing this by leaving 10% of your net estate to charity.
There are different ways to plan for the future, and our expert Wills lawyers will be able to advise you on the best option for your circumstances.
Different types of gifts to leave in your Will
There are three main types of gifts that you can leave in your Will, as follows:
- Specific gifts – particular named items left to an individual, for example, a piano left to a named grandchild. It is vital when leaving specific gifts that they are clearly defined as well as being easy to locate, so that disputes and misunderstandings can be avoided.
- Pecuniary gifts – a pecuniary gift is a specified sum of money left to someone or to a group of people, such as £100,000 to be shared equally between grandchildren. It is important to clearly set out who is intended to receive the gift and to ensure that the estate has sufficient funds to pay all the pecuniary gifts listed.
- Residuary gifts – this is the part of the net estate that is left after all of the specific gifts and pecuniary gifts have been made. Because specific gifts, and pecuniary gifts are paid first, before residuary gifts, you should review your Will if your circumstances change. For example, if you have less money left than when you made your Will, the individuals receiving the residue of your estate could receive less than those receiving pecuniary gifts, which might not be what you wanted.
If you ask us to draft your Will for you, we will ensure that the gifts you leave are clear and unambiguous and that your Will sets out exactly what you want to happen to your assets after your death.
Unfortunately, disputes sometimes arise after someone dies. Emotions can be running high, and if an individual believes they have been left out or should have received more, they may bring a claim against the estate. If a Will has been poorly drafted and is ambiguous, this can cause misunderstandings, and people may believe that the deceased wanted something different to happen.
At Thornton Jones, our Wills experts are experienced in dealing with Wills disputes, often referred to as contentious probate. Wherever possible, we work to resolve matters without protracted legal action. We can negotiate with the claimant on behalf of the estate to try and resolve issues by agreement.
If you believe that you are entitled to receive a share of an estate, we can advise you on your rights, for example, if you relied on the deceased to maintain you and, where appropriate, represent you in bringing a claim.
Why choose Thornton Jones’ Wills lawyers near Tadcaster?
Our Wills solicitors have decades of combined experience in dealing with all aspects of Wills, meaning you can be sure that our advice to you will be in your best interests. Our in-depth knowledge of the law surrounding Wills means we are often called on to deal with complex estates and difficult inheritance disputes.
Our proficiency in the area of Wills, probate and inheritance has been recognised by the Law Society by way of an accreditation from the Wills and Inheritance Quality Scheme.
Our Wills team is headed by Liz Fyfe, who is a qualified Trusts and Estates Practitioner with STEP (the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners).
Thornton Jones is independently regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).
Contact our Will writing solicitors near Tadcaster, North Yorkshire
To speak to our expert Will solicitors for clients in Tadcaster, North Yorkshire or the surrounding area, please contact our Sherburn in Elmet office.