If you don’t have a will when you die, your money, property and possessions will be shared out according to the law instead of your wishes. This can mean they pass to someone you hadn’t intended – or that someone you want to pass things on to ends up with nothing.
If you have specific items of financial or sentimental value, you cannot ensure they are inherited by the people you want unless you have a Will.
If you aren’t married and don’t have a Will, your partner, regardless of how long you have been together or if you have children, will not inherit anything.
If you have children, a Will enables you to name the people you would like to look after them should you die. Without one, the Local Authorities decide.
Dying without a Will also means that the time it takes to administer your ‘Estate’ (everything you own and all your money) is significantly increased.
A Will can help reduce the amount of Inheritance Tax that may be payable on the value of the property and money you leave behind.
In 2013, £38m went to the Government from people who died without a Will. Every penny of this could have been inherited by the right people.