Will Writing & Law Changes to Intestacy Rules

Those kind people over at the Estate Planner’s Network have updated us on changes to intestacy rules, from October 1st, 2014. The Inheritance and Trustees Powers Act 2014 comes into effect on the 1st October 2014. Listed below are a few key points that will be of interest to Will Writers & Estate Planners. To see the full legislation please visit http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2014/16/contents. Changes to the intestacy rules – Currently the surviving spouse or civil partner of the deceased where there are no children has to share the estate with surviving relatives of the deceased if the estate is greater than £450,000. Under the new rules the spouse or civil partner will inherit the entire estate. Where the deceased has children and the estate is worth more than £250,000 the surviving spouse/civil partner will now receive one half of the residue in full, rather than a life interest. The statutory legacy for spouses and civil partners will now rise, at least every five years, in line with the consumer prices index. Adopted children – The new laws alter the position of adopted children on the death of intestate parents to rectify an issue where adoption of a child after the death of the parent could affect a claim to their inheritance. Definition of chattels – The definition of chattels has been simplified and now reads “means tangible movable property, other than any such property which consists of money or securities for money, or was used at the death of the intestate solely or mainly for business purposes or was held at the death of the intestate solely as an investment”. Claims for dependants – Amendments are also made to the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 and, for example, expand the definition of who can make a claim to an estate to include a person ‘treated as a child of the family’ Where you require any help or assistance in updating or writing your will, please contact us. Related articles What Downton Abbey can teach us about dying without a...

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Should You Talk to the Widow?

After someone has died, neighbours, friends and colleagues from work may be unable to talk to you about the deceased, the funeral and any other matters relating to those subjects. People are worried they may say the wrong thing and may try and avoid a widow or family member when they meet them outside of home or work. While it is true that many people do struggle to talk about death, it is usually helpful for those closest to the deceased person to talk with friends, neighbours and colleagues about the person who has died. They may ask about whether a pre-paid funeral plan exists or if the deceased had any particular final wishes. They want to ask questions about the funeral and may be afraid to ask. Those that do step forward to ask you about ways in which they can help you at this time, will be of a great help to you and if there are any tasks which require completing, these may just be the right people that can help you at this time. As soon as the ice is broken with the people closely affected by the death, most individuals will find that it is better to talk about the subject than to avoid it and people who have lost someone close to them recently will be pleased to talk rather than being left alone at a time of great...

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