A Will is the only safe way of making your wishes known for when you die and of ensuring that your estate goes to those you want it to. It allows you to set out exactly how you wish your estate to be dealt with after your death, removing any ambiguity that could cause problems for your loved ones or see your estate go to people you wouldn’t wish to inherit.
If you don't have a Will you are said to die 'intestate'. This means that the law will decide how your estate is distributed. This can often result in disagreement between those who are left behind and the potential for serious damage to important family relationships.
At Bakerlaw, our lawyers will discuss the options available to you and ensure your Will not only reflects your wishes but effectively protects your assets.
Our Will solicitors in London and Farnham can assist with matters including:
- Making a Will
- Updating your Will
- Will disputes
We are happy to discuss making a Will over the phone or via videoconferencing for your safety and convenience. Home visits can also be arranged where appropriate.
Our expertise with Wills & lifetime planning
Head of Private Client Amy Nelson has specialised exclusively in Wills and lifetime planning since 2006, giving her exceptional expertise in this complex area. Amy is a member of the Society of Trust & Estate Practitioners (STEP), a worldwide organisation for most experienced and senior practitioners in the field of inheritance law.
Amy is supported by an able team of legal specialists who you can read more about here.
How we can help you with making a Will
Making a Will
Whether you have never made a Will before or want to make a new Will to replace your existing plans, it is important to have specialist legal advice. This ensures your wishes are set out clearly, with no room for confusion or misinterpretation.
Our Will solicitors will work closely with you, making sure you consider all of the assets in your estate and all of the people you would like to benefit from your estate. We can then draft a watertight Will and ensure it is properly witnessed and safely stored, giving you complete peace of mind.
Updating your Will
You should review your Will at least every 5 years so you can consider how your personal and financial circumstances may have changed in that time and any changes you need to make to your Will as a result. It is also important to bear in mind that any Will you have will become invalid if you get married.
Our Will writing solicitors can review your Will with you, discuss your circumstances and suggest any changes we think you may need to make. We can also talk through any changes you are considering, making sure you fully understand their effects.
Where you do wish to update your Will, we can do this either by drafting a new Will or creating a supplementary document known as a ‘codicil’ to amend your existing Will.
Inheritance disputes are, sadly, all too common. They can occur where someone dies without leaving a Will, where a Will is unclear or where someone is simply unhappy with the contents of a Will they expected to benefit from.
Our contentious probate experts advise both those seeking to dispute a Will and those acting for the estate who need to defend Will claims. We can advise you on your legal position and the available options, giving you the best chance of achieving a swift and cost-effective outcome without court proceedings, if possible.
Our Head of Dispute Resolution Mark Ridley is highly experienced acting for clients on both sides of a wide range of inheritance disputes. Mark is a member of the Association of Contentious Trusts and Probate Specialists (ACTAPS), reflecting his exceptional expertise.
Our Will pricing
Fixed fee Wills
We offer a fixed fee Will writing service for straightforward estates. This gives you certainty over the cost involved in making a Will.
We will be happy to discuss your requirements with you to see if a fixed fee Will is appropriate for your needs.
Hourly rates for Wills & estate planning
For more complex Wills and estates, we will charge an hourly rate based on the level of expertise required to effectively service your needs.
For more information about our fixed fee Wills and hourly rates, please get in touch.
I don't think I have enough assets to worry about making a Will – do I?
You may be surprised as your assets could include not only savings in the bank and property but also life insurance policies, motor vehicles and jewellery.
We have young children but very few assets – why should we make a Will?
It's not only people with money and property who should make a Will. All parents should make a Will to appoint guardians for their young children because if you both die the guardians you have appointed will take on the responsibility for bringing up your children. This way you can make sure that your children are looked after by the people you have chosen rather than those appointed by the Court.
Who should I appoint as Executors?
You should choose someone you trust and who is likely to live longer than you. This can be a friend or family member but remember it is an important responsibility and can be time consuming, challenging and require complex decisions. You should appoint someone who has the time and the capability to carry out the required duties. It is sometimes wise to consider a professional and independent executor.
Can I make special provision for my disabled child in a Will?
Yes, this can be addressed and our lawyers will discuss the options available to you. They will help you choose the most appropriate way of ensuring your child is provided for after you have died. This could perhaps be by setting up a Disabled Will Trust.
How much does a Will cost?
It depends! Straightforward Wills are inexpensive and prepared on a fixed fee basis. Our lawyers are happy to discuss and agree costs with you for more complicated Wills.
Can I protect my assets against nursing home fees?
Yes – our lawyers will discuss the various options available and prepare Wills which enable you to effectively protect your assets.