Do you trust your family? Of course you do.
Would you be happy giving them the responsibility to manage your affairs after your death, when they are at their most vulnerable in their grief?
Many of us choose our closest family to be our Executors in our wills without really realising the level of responsibility that will befall them when the time comes.
At this sad time, our nearest and dearest may just not be able to cope with all that this entails, and this is why we should give careful consideration to who we name as our Executors.
You might decide that your spouse would have your best interests at heart and the ability to administer your estate, liaising with financial institutions, government bodies and completing the necessary paperwork when applying for Probate which is great.
By appointing a second / third Executor you could ease the burden, or by having a reserve Executor in case they feel they are unable to cope with the task is also a great idea.
So what would we...
If you have ever organised a funeral you will already know how expensive they are and how easy it is for costs to run out of control.
Even if you start with a budget and good intentions it's easy to get drawn in with all the extras. After all you are taking care of a loved one and why shouldn't they have the best.
In our experience people often go overboard with funerals, they order excessive numbers of cars, an expensive coffin for a cremation, several floral tributes and a very expensive wake afterwards.
Is this really what your loved one would have wanted? Wouldn't they rather have had a simple funeral with people who matter the most rather than creating a show which is going to cost much more than they had budgeted for?
So what can we do to avoid high funeral costs? Well, the first thing to consider is buying a prepaid funeral. No, this isn't at all morbid. In fact it's being very sensible and also having paid up front for your funeral you are automatically setting the the tone...
There are things we all avoid in life.
Things like clearing out the cupboard under the sink, sorting out those bookshelves and oh yes, making a Will.
Clearing out the cupboard may make things a little tidier but won't really have a great impact on our lives, but making a Will, well that certainly makes a difference.
I hear comments all the time like, I really must get a Will made, but not just at the moment. Or no, it's being morbid.
Back in 2014, on a Friday afternoon in January, I sat in our doctors surgery with my husband Robert. I can still hear the words ringing around my head as we heard that Robert had been diagnosed with a brain tumour.
After the initial shock, we decided that we were going to fight this but at the same time would take steps to make provisions should the worst happen.
We weren't being morbid, we were being practical.
It's now 2018 and Robert is really no further forward despite having surgeries, treatment etc. The tumour remains and is still troublesome.
We never know what's around the corner and really don't want to think about what would happen if we died suddenly.
If you have children, you might have already thought about who would care for them if you were not around.
It might be that your partner would care for them, which is great, but what if they are not your partner's natural children and their biological parent is no longer a part of your life?
It's entirely possible that in the event of your death they could return to the scene demanding custody of their children, thus taking them away from the family home and your partner who may have been caring for them with you for many years.
Nobody can sever the biological ties that exist between parent and child, but not all parents are the best carers for their own children. This could be due to alcohol and drug misuse, or perhaps illness or behavioural issues, or a number of other reasons.
The point is, that as the main parent you can express your wishes for guardianship as part...
If you have ever been named as an Executor in someone's Will then you already know that this is a very important role and carries with it great responsibilities.
An Executor is someone you choose when making your Will. It's someone you trust to carry out your wishes after your death.
As an Executor, it's your duty to obtain the Death Certificate and to forward copies to the institutions and organisations relating to the estate of the deceased. For example, you will need to compile a full and comprehensive list of every bank account, savings account, investments, pensions, benefits, as well as all debts, such as credit cards, loans, catalogue accounts, paypal accounts, plus all details of HM Revenue liabilities.
This so that once you have collected all the funds into a new Executor bank account, which you also have to arrange, you can examine the Will and make payments to the beneficiaries.
It should be noted that you can only start paying out the beneficiaries after all the monies...