End of Life Issues: Getting Organised.
The end of life is not too unexpected for most people, so we are putting together some resources which you may find helpful. We were inspired by a brave young mother with terminal cancer who was determined to leave as few problems as possible for her young family. This is just a start, and we welcome your suggestions of what you have found helpful.
These are the things we can help with directly:
- Last Will – is it up to date and relevant. Has it been signed in front of two independent witnesses? Can it be found? Get your Last Will and testament sorted. Over 6 in 10 of us die without a valid Last Will and Testament!
- Lasting Power of Attorney. If you may fade away over a period, you will want to ensure that the right people are in charge of your finances and welfare. If you don’t, the Courts and Social Services will be in charge, not your husband or wife and certainly not a common law spouse. Rectifying that would take about 6 months and cost around £3,000, and any urgent decisions would be taken by the Court of Protection. Lasting Powers of Attorney take 3 months from start to when they can be used, so do not delay.
- Inheritance Tax Planning. If your assets mean that the Taxman may be taking a large slice of your hard earned assets before the family, why not take advantage of our Inheritance Tax Planning Service? We have save people millions of pounds with straightforward advice – we don’t sell insurance or investments, though it is possible we will suggest that you talk to a financial adviser about such things if they seem appropriate. Spending a few pounds and half an hour could reap massive rewards for those who will one day be left behind, and the earlier you plan, the cheaper and more effective it is.
- Funeral Plans. There are all sorts of awful “funeral plans” on the market. This is a separate business, and is NOT regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. Organisingyour own funeral takes away some of the strain on those left behind. We are also working with a colleague on a Guide to Planning A Funeral Ceremony. Ask us for a copy by email.
4) Probate. Sorting out your assets
and children at the end of life. Approval is often required from the Courts and Taxman before this can be done (it is what we do at The Probate Department Ltd.) When you die, it makes things much easier of all your paperwork is in order and has not been thrown away. The Taxman can ask for records going back up to 14 years! We are preparing a guide for this, if you would like one when the first draft is ready, please email us.