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Frequently asked questions
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Is making a Will difficult?

No. You need to make a list of your property and assets and consider whom you wish to benefit from your estate, ensuring provision has been made for dependant relatives. You should also consider who you would want to look after your children (Guardians) if they were still young.

Do I need to appoint Guardians?

Yes you do if you have any children under the age of 18. Your Will is the only place you can nominate your Guardians so it's very important to do so. Ideal choices are your parents if they're able to cope with your young family or your brothers/sisters or close friends, usually someone your children are already comfortable with.

What will happen to our children if we don’t appoint Guardians?

If you fail to appoint guardians in your Will and your children are orphaned before they reach 18, the courts will appoint guardians instead, but they won't necessarily choose the people that you would have preferred to take care of your children.

Should I make the guardians trustees as well?

Many people choose to do this, as the guardians will be taking care of your children's finances until they are at least 18. If you do this, it is advisable also to appoint another trustee who is not related to the guardians, e.g. a Professional Trustee. Doing so will help to provide objectivity and guard against conflicts of interest. It will also provide the guardians with some support in handling the financial and legal aspects of a trust.

Who can be my Executors?

Most people want to make sure that control of their assets stays within their family or group of close friends so these same people can also be your Executors.

You need a minimum of 1 and maximum of 4, if there's anything complex in your Will, you should consider using a professional to act as Executor, unlike most Solicitors Evamore Legal Services are happy to offer this service at a fixed cost.

When does my Will become Legal?

Once it has been signed, dated and witnessed correctly your Will becomes a legal document.

Where should I keep my Will?

We always advocate that you take advantage of our safe & secure storage facility to ensure that your Will can be found at the time that it is needed most.

What does "Residue" mean?

This is everything that's left of your estate once all of your debts have been settled (including Funeral Expenses) and all of your specific gifts have been given out. This will include your bank accounts, your car, furniture and any property that you own unless any of these have been previously mentioned in your will to go to someone in particular

What is a Trust?

A legal trust is an entity frequently used in estate planning to help a person distribute property or provide for a loved one after they have passed away. The trust is a written set of rules that will determine how, what, when, and where a gift or property is to be distributed to an heir or beneficiary. Because a trust is a legal entity, you must follow the rules outlined in your state to ensure that the trust is set up correctly, managed by a reliable individual, and properly funded.

How does a Trust differ from a Will?

Not many people understand what a Trust is and how it differs from a Will. There are many types of Trusts, but the one main benefit of all Trusts is how they will keep your estate out of probate after your death.

The main difference between a Trust and a Will is the fact that your property won't go through probate when you die. With a Will the transfer of property takes place at your death and will need to go through the court system, (probate) to determine the legalities of the will and the properties being dispersed. During probate much of the estate is taken by taxes and sometimes attorneys. When you create a Trust you transfer your properties to it while you are still alive and it continues on through your death.

What's Tenants in Common?

This is a way of 2 to 4 people owning a house so they can each control their share of the house in their Will. If you own a house Jointly, it automatically passes to the surviving owner when you die, it is not controlled by your Will. If you own the property as Tenants in Common you can leave your share to who ever you want, at Evamore Legal Services we always recommend leaving your share in Trust with a lifetime benefit to your surviving Spouse.

Who pays the bill for Long Term Care?

Elderly people have to pay some, or all, of the costs of care provision if their assets - including property - are worth more than £23,250.

Are there any exceptions to this rule?

If any of the following applies then the value of your home will not be taken into account when assessing how much you should pay towards care home fees.

- If a partner or spouse is still living in the home

- If a relative aged 60 or over lives with you

- If you have incapacitated relatives aged below 60 living with you

- If there is a child under 16 living in the property whom the resident is liable to maintain

What is a Lasting Power of Attorney?

A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document. It allows you to appoint someone that you trust as an ‘attorney’ to make decisions on your behalf. Attorneys can make decisions for you when you no longer wish to or when you lack the mental capacity to do so.

Do I need to register my LPA?

Yes. A Lasting Power of Attorney cannot be used until it is registered with the Office of the Public Guardian.

What are the benefits of an LPA?

A Lasting Power of Attorney can help you plan how your health, wellbeing and financial affairs will be looked after. It allows you to plan in advance:

  • the decisions you want to be made on your behalf if you lose capacity to make them yourself
  • the people you want to make these decisions
  • how you want the people to make these decisions

Having a Lasting Power of Attorney is a safe way of maintaining control over decisions made for you because:

  • it has to be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian before it can be used
  • you choose someone to provide a ‘certificate’, which means they confirm that you understand the significance and purpose of what you’re agreeing to
  • you can choose who gets told about your Lasting Power of Attorney when it is registered (so they have an opportunity to raise concerns)
  • your signature and the signatures of your chosen attorneys must be witnessed
  • your attorney(s) must follow the Code of Practice of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and act in your best interests
  • the Office of the Public Guardian provides helpful support and advice

What are the different types of LPA?

There are two different types of Lasting Power of Attorney:

  • health and welfare Lasting Power of Attorney
  • property and financial affairs Lasting Power of Attorney

Health and welfare Lasting Power of Attorney

A health and welfare Lasting Power of Attorney allows you to choose one or more people to make decisions for things such as medical treatment. A health and welfare Lasting Power of Attorney can only be used if you lack the ability to make decisions for yourself.

Property and financial Affairs Lasting Power of Attorney

A property and financial affairs Lasting Power of Attorney lets you choose one or more people to make property and financial affairs decisions for you. This could include decisions about paying bills or selling your home. You can appoint someone as an attorney to look after your property and financial affairs at any time. You can also include a condition that means the attorney can only make decisions when you lose the ability to do so yourself.

Can Evamore Legal Services act as Professional Trustees?

Yes. We are happy to offer this service to all of our clients.

 


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