Major Reasons That Parents Need a Will

Major Reasons That Parents Need a Will

Everyone knows the importance of a will, although many of us put it off for years, However, having a baby can often spur people into action, as they want to ensure that their child is cared for in the event something should happen to them. Whether you’ve recently had a child, or have children who have long flown the nest, it’s important to get your will in order and here are a few reasons why.

1.       Appointing a guardian

If you die without a will, and you don’t have a partner with parental responsibility, then the court may well appoint a guardian for your child. However, this might not be the person you’d want to choose. That’s why wills for parents should always include details of who you’d like to be a guardian, and if your partner is also making a will, you should try to appoint the same guardians to avoid legal issues. Guardians can be friends or family, but you should consider:

  • Whether they are willing to look after your child – it’s important to ask potential guardians
  • Their family environment – do they already have their own children? Can they take on more?
  • Their age – while you might want to appoint someone such as the child’s grandparents, will they be able to cope with a child?
  • Their relationship to your child – would they be happy to live with them?
  • Their values and parenting style – do they match with your beliefs?

2.       Leaving money for your children

Your will should clearly state how your assets are to be divided, and this includes money such as savings or life insurance. If you were to die while your children are young, you might want to set up trusts for them, taken care of by their guardian, until they reach a certain age. Many people assume that when they die, their money will automatically go to their next of kin such as children, but this isn’t always the case. Therefore, a clear and concise will is important.

3.       Your partner might not inherit your estate

More couples than ever are unmarried and raising children, and while this dynamic can work well, it’s important to note that it can cause problems when one partner dies. Despite popular belief, there’s no such thing as a common law spouse in the UK, so your estate could end up going to your parents or other surviving relatives. It’s important to have a well-written will to make the probate stage easier for those who are left behind, and ensure that your partner isn’t left without money, or having to fight for their share. If you are married, wills are still essential, as this can make life much easier for your surviving spouse when you pass, ensuring your wishes are followed.

If you’re a parent who needs a will, and you live in the East Anglia or Midlands area, then Heritage Wills offer a simple, face to face service in the comfort of your own home. Simply call 01603 894500, or e-mail to book your appointment today or find out more.