Why Make A Will?
If you die without having made a Will (known as ‘intestate’), certain things will, by law, happen automatically whether that was your intention or not.
For example, if you own a property, you will have no control over who will receive it after your death.
People often assume that, if they have no Will, everything will pass to their spouse. But this is not always the case. Under the intestacy rules only property up to a certain value passes automatically to your spouse. If your estate includes a house in your sole name, it is possible that the value of this would exceed the amount which your spouse would automatically receive.
If you hold property in joint names with another person it may pass automatically to that person upon your death. But if the property is a house or land, it is possible that it would not pass automatically. This depends upon the terms of your title deeds.
The balance of your estate could be divided between your spouse and your children. If you have a partner but are not married, your partner has no automatic right to your property should you die.
If you have no close family, the intestacy rules can give rise to very serious complications. The costs incurred in tracing very distant relatives can be high.