Latest update in Intestacy Rules - Spouses to inherit more
Certain rules set by the government determine exactly who inherits a person’s estate if they die intestate i.e WITHOUT A WILL.
From February 6th, these rules have changed to take account of inflation. Specifically, a spouse or civil partner will automatically be entitled to inherit the first £270,000, if their partner dies without a will, an increase of £20,000. They will also receive all personal possessions and half of the remaining estate whilst the other half will go to their children. If there are no children the partner will inherit the entire estate.
Therefore, certainly if there are children, relying on these rules could leave the surviving spouse with potentially unnecessary financial complications and a messy family situation to sort out. Furthermore, it could also create an unnecessary inheritance tax bill.
These rules also do not provide for cohabiting couples or close friends. In these circumstances, apart from any jointly owned property, all the estate will go to the deceased’s children, and where there are no children, other family members.
Despite these risks and potential costs of relying on intestacy rules, it is estimated that circa 30m people in the UK have not taken out a will (unbiased.co.uk).
Making a will does ensure that you pass on your estate to the people you want to benefit in the most cost effective and timely way.
If you are in a position where this might affect you, Puldoran are specialists in all aspects of will writing and would be pleased to discuss this with you further.
Please contact us on 01344 636 338.