Making a Will is one of the most important things you can do

Posted 9th January 2024

Making a will means you take control of who you leave your possessions and money to when you die.

Explore the importance of making a Will with Wilson Browne Solicitors. Learn about the importance of a properly witnessed and signed Will, and the misconceptions about inheritance in the absence of a Will, especially for unmarried couples.

Whilst it may not be the most pleasant subject to discuss within your family, making a Will is important. Let’s take a look at some myths relating to Wills.

Even if you do not have a Will, you can still specify who you want to inherit your estate once you pass away, as long as you have written it down.

Unfortunately this is a Myth. A Will isn’t valid unless it has been witnessed in accordance with Section 9 of the Wills Act 1837. This requires the Will to be in writing and signed by the testator in the presence of two witnesses. The two witnesses must then also sign the Will in the presence of the testator. There is a good chance that a homemade Will or a Will pack can lead to errors such as the Will not being signed properly or dependents’ being left out. This in turn can lead to the Will becoming invalid or disputes between those that believed they should have been beneficiaries.

If you are co-habiting with a partner to whom you are not married, and pass away without a Will, your estate will go to your partner.

Unfortunately this is also a Myth. There is no such thing as a “common law marriage” under the rule of law and accordingly because there is no Will, the Rules of Intestacy apply. This means that a partner would not inherit under your Estate and it may be that people within your family with whom you do not maintain a relationship could inherit instead.

If you would like your estate to go to your partner when you pass away you need to make a Will.

At present, if you die without a Will and are married, your spouse or civil partner will inherit your assets including property and all the personal possessions, regardless of their value.

This is true to some extent. If you die without a Will and are married your spouse or civil partner will inherit all of the assets held in your sole name including property up to a value of £270,000, and all the personal possessions, regardless of their value. Your spouse or civil partner will then inherit half of the remainder of your Estate and the remaining half will be distributed between any of your children equally. If there are no children then your spouse or civil partner gets the entire Estate.

If you want to specify certain amounts of money, possessions or property be distributed to your children then you must make a Will to express your wishes.

If you would to discuss making a Will Wilson Browne Solicitors are offering 20% off Wills in February. Simply call 0800 088 6004 on Monday 5th February quoting “Purple Monday” to secure your appointment at a reduced rate. Terms and conditions apply visit