Have you thought of making a new Will but decided that it just seemed like too much hard work, then we at Carter Anhold & Co Solicitors want to help. Below we have explained some of the reasons why it is a good idea to make a Will and what information you will need to make one:
Why make a Will?
A Will is a document that can ensure that your intentions can be carried out on your death. We would recommend having a Will made especially when you have a family, a number of assets or assets abroad. If you die without making a Will, then your estate will be distributed in accordance with the law as set out in the Succession Act 1965. It becomes particularly important to make a Will when you have children under the age of 18 years, as you will need to appoint someone as testamentary guardians of your children should anything happen to you. In the event that there is no one appointed then an application may have to be made to Court to have someone appointed as guardian.
What does it involve?
It usually involves two appointments, one to take your initial instructions and the other to have the Will executed in the presence of two witnesses. If you are sick and unable to attend at our offices, then we can make arrangements for one of our Solicitors to attend with you at your house or in the hospital. We would recommend that you set aside about 1 hour for the first appointment so that we can take as detailed as instructions as possible. Once initial instructions are taken the Will is drafted immediately and we would arrange for you to attend to have the Will executed either later that day or the next day.
What do I need?
We would recommend bringing as much information with you as possible. For example, your PPS number, title deeds, maps, account numbers, information on any share holdings, life policies, savings certificates, prize bonds. If assets include farm assets then we would recommend you bring with you your herd number and details of any entitlements which may be attaching to the land. You might note that any entitlements being claimed under Regulation 1307/2013 shall automatically transfer with the eligible land unless there is a legal impediment preventing this.
We would also suggest that you bring the names and addresses of any children or relatives whom you wish to provide for in your Will. If you are separated or divorced, we would recommend that you bring with you any paper work relating to this. In the case of a widow or widower we would suggest you bring a copy of your spouse’s death certificate. If a civil partnership has been dissolved or annulled bring with you a copy of the dissolution or annulment or any order made.
We would also recommend bring with you copies of any previous Wills made by you. In particular a copy of any Will made in a foreign jurisdiction should be shown to the Solicitor so that your Will in Ireland doesn’t affect or revoke the Will in the foreign jurisdiction.
Should you wish for any social media accounts to be deleted or controlled by your executors you should bring with you any access codes that may be required. Likewise any codes should be provided in relation to digital currencies you may own.
Do I need to bring anyone with me?
In the case of married couples, civil partners or co-habitants we would recommend that you attend together for the initial instructions. However you do not need to bring anyone else with you.
Do I need to do anything before I attend?
We would recommend that you decide on who you wish to appoint as an executor of your Will. Although while only one executor is legally required, we would recommend that you appoint two. This is prudent for many reasons – in the case of a disability, if the executor predeceased you, it allows for one executor to watch the other or to act as a substitute. We would recommend that you discuss with anyone you propose appointing as an executor to ensure that they are willing to act. We would also suggest that anyone you appoint be resident in the Country as they will be required to attend to sign legal documents after your death. You might note that being an executor does not prevent them from inheriting under the Will. Accordingly we would recommend that you appoint family members to act as executors if at all possible.
If you have children under the age of 18 years you will need to appoint testamentary guardians for them and also trustees to hold any assets for any children until they reach the age of 18 years or 23 years if in full time education. The same two people can be appointed as executors, trustees and testamentary guardians.
It may in some cases be necessary to appoint two executors, one with particular skills depending on the nature of assets which are involved for example businesses, literary works or digital assets.
What happens next?
Once you attend, the Solicitor will take detailed instructions from you and draft a Will in accordance with your instructions. Once executed the Will together with any additional information and a detailed attendance will be kept in a safe. Into the future if your circumstances change, your Will can be amended to reflect these changes.
Should you require any further information or wish to make an appointment to attend please do not hesitate to contact us on 071 91 62211 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ciara McLoughlin Solicitor