At this time, our health and finances are on our minds like never before. There are all sorts of things that we need to worry about at the moment, but more people than ever have started to worry about their Wills and Powers of Attorney and to think about putting a plan in place to protect their family’s future. This article is just a reminder about how important these matters are and how Leech & Co can help you.
We can help you with Wills and Trusts, Powers of Attorney, Funeral Plans, Probate and administering the Estate (if a loved has died and you are an Executor). There are full details on our website – www.leechandco.co.uk – together with Factsheets, Blogs and FAQs to help you understand the issues involved and why these matters are so important. Below is a very quick guide to help you get started with a plan.
What happens if you have a Will
Your family will know exactly what your wishes are and these wishes can then be carried out without arguments; your property, assets, savings and belongings will go to who you want them to go to; your family will be protected from legal and tax bills; if you have children under 18, your wishes as to their future will be clear and so can be carried out.
What happens if you don’t have a Will
Your family will not know what your wishes are and so may disagree on what to do adding to their stress at an already emotional time; the law will decide who receives your property, assets, savings and belongings and so these may not to go to who you want them to go to and/or a person who you want to receive something may receive nothing; there may be legal and tax bills; if you have children under 18, you will have no say as to what happens to them when you are not here.
A Will is one of the most important documents you will ever make. It is vital to have one and it is vital that you get it right so that your future, and your family’s future, is protected. The relatively small cost now of using a Solicitor to prepare and execute a valid, legally binding Will that will carry out all of your wishes will be a saving in all sorts of ways down the line for you and your family.
Making a will now is a small investment in terms of time and money that will pay off in the long-run for you and your family. Unfortunately, nobody knows when the time will come so having a Will in place as early as possible will give you and your family peace of mind, legal certainty and financial security.
Powers of Attorney
What happens if you have a Power of Attorney
If you are ever unable to look after yourself or make decisions to do with your health or finances e.g. dementia, a stroke, long-term illness or isolation etc, your family will immediately be able to look after you, make decisions for you so that you are supported financially and looked after in terms of your health and wellbeing; your family will have peace of mind knowing that you are protected.
What happens if you don’t have a Power of Attorney
If you are ever unable to look after yourself or make decisions to do with your health and finances e.g. dementia, a stroke, long-term illness or isolation etc, your family will not be able to access your finances, will not be able to contact your services or utility providers on your behalf and will not be able to make decisions for you to do with your health and wellbeing.
Essentially, your family will be very limited in what they can do for you. Your family will have to apply to the Court of Protection for court orders to access your finances and make decisions on your behalf to do with your health and wellbeing. This is a lengthy, complex and expensive process.
Again, as with a Will, a Power of Attorney is one of the most important documents you will ever make. It is essential that everyone has one in place to protect them and their family should there ever be a time they are unable to look after themselves or make their own decisions. Think of it like an insurance policy – you hope you never have to use it, but it is better to have it in place and not need it than to need it and not have it.
The relatively small cost now of using a Solicitor to prepare and register a legally binding, valid Power of Attorney that ensures you are protected in terms of your health and finances is far outweighed by the cost of applying to, and dealing with, the Court of Protection and the emotional cost to your family of being unable to look after you. It is a small investment now in terms of time and money that that will pay off for you and your family in the long-run.
What happens if you have a Funeral Plan
The cost of your funeral will be fixed at today’s prices; you will not pay or save more for your funeral than you need to; the cost can be spread over 25 years; the cost of your funeral will be covered in certain circumstances even if you haven’t finished paying for it; your family will not have the cost and stress of organising your funeral as this will all be taken care of by the Funeral Director in accordance with your wishes; you can specify your wishes so your family is in no doubt about the funeral you want.
What happens if you don’t have a Funeral Plan
Your family will be left with the cost and stress of arranging your funeral at what will be an emotional and upsetting time for them; the cost of the funeral will be the cost at the time which may be significantly higher than today’s costs; your family will not know the type of funeral you wanted and so this may become the cause of family arguments and fall-outs.
A Funeral Plan is basically a sensible way to pay for your funeral, to ensure you have the funeral you want at the price you can afford and to avoid family arguments and fall-outs. It just makes sense to put a Funeral Plan in place as early as possible. They are available for all over-50s, there is a choice of funerals, costs and flexible payment plans and there are no health or background checks.
How Leech & Co can help you
Leech and Co can help you put in place your Will, Power of Attorney and Funeral Plan. You don’t have to have all three, but having even one in place will help the future be that little more certain and safe for you and your family.
We can also help you if you’re an Executor for a loved one’s Will with the Probate and Administration of the Estate. Here is a guide to the steps you need to take – What to do when a loved one dies – a practical and legal guide – but please call us so we can help you straightaway.
If you have concerns about your finances and your future financial plans, we work with a network of trusted, experienced and friendly Independent Financial Advisers who would be able to help you and we would be happy to put you in touch with them.
At Leech & Co, we understand that matters relating to Wills, Powers of Attorney, Funeral Plans and Probate are delicate, emotional and stressful. We will treat you at all times with compassion, kindness and empathy. We pride ourselves on being friendly and approachable, we’re good listeners and we will talk to you in jargon-free plain English. We are here to provide you with expert, professional, legal advice and we work quickly and efficiently to ensure a good outcome for you.
We offer fixed fees wherever possible and flexible payment plans to make our services reasonable and affordable for everyone.
We understand that dealing with these matters is an upsetting and emotional thing to do and it’s something you want to put off and not think about. However, we aim to make the whole process as stress-free and smooth as possible for you. Once these documents are done, they’re done and you don’t have to worry about them – you have put in place a plan that will protect you and your loved ones’ future.