What age will you be ready to have Wills prepared?

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Earlier this year, I met the most delightful couple, who had never quite got round to getting Wills in place.

They were in their nineties, and were very inspiring people.

I could see how they had aged so well, as they both had a really compassionate and joyful attitude, and the lady in particular, was forever explaining to me, many ways that they were blessed.

They had lost so many friends, relatives and neighbours along the way, but they were both still alive. ...

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I was the 9-year old girl who got nothing

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I know I go on and on.

And then I go on some more.

There’s a reason.

When I was a nine year old little girl, my Mum died.

She had married a year before she died, and as many of you who have been reading my articles know, marriage cancels any Will you might have had (unless special wording is included).

What this meant, is that Mum’s new husband got the lot, under the law. And he took it. All of ...

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Award Nomination

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I wanted to share something personal today.  I am very honoured to be shortlisted for Best Business Woman in Legal Services at the Best Business Women Awards.

I genuinely love what I do – supporting people in taking action and sharing messages that make a difference to your awareness about your estate.

This nomination is a privilege and a pleasure that I am looking forward to celebrating at the Gala Dinner on 12th October with family and good friends.

Thank you to my clients, ...

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I admit I felt emotional

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Earlier this week, a chap popped into my office without appointment.

He asked if he could speak with someone about his Dad who’s died.

He was taken to my meeting room, offered a cup of tea, and then I joined him.

We went through the brief details of the estate, we spoke about when the funeral’s arranged for, and then moved on to understand what needs to be done with the estate, how many banks we need to deal with, where the property ...

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Promote your adult children if appropriate

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Clients who have children approaching eighteen, should consider getting on with Wills for now, with a view to promoting children as they reach adulthood.

I have clients who went ahead with Wills last year, knowing that they’d want to put eldest son in charge as a guardian for younger siblings as well as promote as a back up executor, once he reached eighteen years.

Well, they’re back in touch now, to get these changes in place. In fact, while the iron was ...

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Think of your estate as a pizza

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Sometimes clients approach me and tell me that they want to give their home to this person, their Halifax account to that person, and other investments to another person.

In pizza speak, this is a bit like saying your pepperoni to this person, your green peppers to that person and the pizza base to another person.

Far better in my opinion, is to provide slices of your pizza.

Why? If you divide your estate up into percentages, whether it’s to three children ...

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Don’t wait for an emergency to get your Lasting Powers of Attorney in place

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I’m going to keep this to the point.

Recently I’ve had a good number of clients get in touch with me, as their parents’ mental faculties deteriorate.

Where I can, I will help.

This often means ruling off a whole afternoon to really exercise patience and compassion, when people unfamiliar with dealing with lawyers, need to feel comfortable. I need to feel comfortable that the client feels comfortable.

My message to you today, is whether it’s for yourselves or your parents, please take action ...

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There are no silly questions

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People who are planning to get their Wills done some day, often start their questions to me with “I know this is a silly question, but…” and actually, their questions are perfectly sensible and the answers are necessary for them to understand.

I try to reassure people that there are no silly questions when it comes to Wills.

In my opinion, it’s silly to not ask your questions.

Here are some sample questions that I’ve been asked over the years.

  • Can my executors also ...
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Summer Wills

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Is this the Summer that you finally get on with Wills?

Is there a way you can make a day of it?

A good number of my clients, plan their meeting with me, around a visit to St Albans Cathedral, and eating at a good restaurant. Others squeeze in a matinee film across the road at the Odyssey Cinema.

How can you build in some treats, so that you can feel good this Summer about your Will?

Do your best to make it happen. ...

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Feeling like a grumpy old woman

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I’m a pretty relaxed individual, but over the last year, there have been enough things going on in the world of Wills & Probate to make me rant.

The issues which have made me particularly grumpy, are:

  1. Residential Nil Rate Band (RNRB)
  2. Proposed increase of Probate fees

The RNRB really got me going. I wrote a LinkedIn article, appealing to Mrs May. I even wrote to her at 10 Downing Street. And when the official response made me feel my points had been missed, ...

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