To try to write own will for guardianship of DD?(21 Posts)
We have a baby DD and I'd like to draw up a will to say who we'd like to have guardianship of her if anything were to happen to DH and I.
We don't have a huge amount else to leave but what we do have we would leave to her for when she is older. The guardians are financially able and willing to bring her up.
It seems like something quite simple to draw up and get witnessed, then keep somewhere. Can I send an email version in case anything happens to the hard copy? Or I understand we can keep it with the bank.
We'd ideally not spend hundreds on a solicitor for something so simple, but equally it's important so if there's a lot more to it than what is set out on the gov.uk site then of course we will pay.
Given how important this is I would get a professional to draw it up. But he wary of naming executors. If you name a bank/solicitor etc as your executor they might try to fleece your estate.
Never write your own will. It's much too important to allow for any errors and all too easy to word it incorrectly or to miss out important information. Some solicitors will have times when they offer reduced wills or create wills in exchange for a reasonable donation to charity.
I'd strongly recommend you consider taking out a life insurance policy too. Just because your guardians are financially able now doesn't mean they always will be. It needn't cost too much but could be the best investment you ever make.
Ok, thank you, we will
We do have life insurance and critical illness cover, that's a good point as I assume life insurance proceeds need to be mentioned
There are online will writing services. You can find free ones through Martin's Money Savings website. I use one that was free and then £10 per year (after the first year) for unlimited amendments and additions etc.
It's great and really quick to change anything on it should anything happen and your circumstances change or those of who you choose as guardians. You can link yours and your DH's wills through it too.
Please it will only be about £150 for a simple joint will by a solicitor. Writing your own can sometimes be more disastrous than not having one at all!
My husband and I have recently just done ours, we have a 2 year old. We used solicitors. Although our consultation only took 30 minutes for them to get the relevant info, the actual will is very detailed. Please consider a solicitor. Also, if you don’t have life assurance then it’s worth considering.
Yes seen a solicitor it is worth the money for the peace of mind.
As a previous poster said, it's actually pretty quick but the wills are detailed. We have mirror wills with stipulation for if something happens to both of us. We also want to leave everything to our dc but have been able with the will to give access to the money to the people caring for them if they need to so our dc will be able to go on school trips / holidays etc. Teenagers can be very expensive.
Ideally your life insurance policy should be held in a trust so that proceeds fall outside your estate. This means the money can be paid to the Trustees quickly (no wait for probate) and no potential Inheritance tax liability. This can be arranged quite easily with the insurance provider and at no extra cost.
Some unions have free will writing as part of their membership
Solicitors just use templates and can knock them out v quickly particularly when ther is nothing unusual in them.
I definitely wouldn’t write one from scratch or even from a template on the internet but I used my sister’s and brother in law’s will as a template (they were basic mirror wills and we were in the same circumstances eg. married with children so it was literally just a case of changing the names, names of the executors, guardians etc.)
Having written pur wills. we were advised to write a Letter Of Intent. In it we specified our wishes regarding education, life skills to be taught, our personal preferences regarding tattoos and piercings, our thoughts on travel and university, what sort of vehicle we’d like them to drive, the kind of friends we would want them to have....etc etc.
We did firmly stipulate how inheritance was to be allocated.
This was emailed to the person who our child would go to and the solicitor attached it to the will.
We did our wills with a solicitor - was very similar to yours, but there were clauses we wouldn't have thought of which was useful - e.g. if everyone including children die at same time, what happens to your estate then. Key peace of mind though is knowing it is drafted and executed (signed) properly with witnesses etc, which isn't always easy to get right.
We did our own (kind of). You can get will writing kits.
It’s very basic but that’s all we wanted. You name executors of the Will, beneficiaries (we just put to be split evenly between any children) and states what we wanted to happen with our few bits should our DD not outlive us and then a section for naming particular items who we want to gift (which is outside of the everything to our kids bit eg animals, sentimental items).
We got it witnessed by someone who is completely 3rd party to the will and keep a copy at our house and at each of our parents houses plus the electronic copy just in case we need to edit it
Whilst the proposed guardians are of means it's worth having the money in trust with provision to be able to draw on it for education, certainly for university but also potentially boarding school if desired - but it's also wise to have the trust mature at 21 or older as it's potentially a lot of money for a young adult (for comparison our estate is valued at over £1.2 million because of the house, life assurance, death in service and pensions despite us being broke by week 3 of the month)
You need proper legal advice.
I’d strongly suggest looking at Marlow Wills (AKA Mumblechum who offers really good advice on the Legal board and is the Mumsnet “go to” will person). She’s available via Skype, very professional and knowledgeable, and reasonably priced. She did wills and LPAs for us.
I second Mumblechum. She really knows her stuff and is remarkably good value.
To me it depends on who you are thinking of. If you only have one sibling and you're choosing them, then to me would be the most obvious person in any case. If you're ignoring family and choosing someone else, definitely get professionals involved.
Ultimately guardianship isn't fixed, even with naming a will, but it does speak to your intentions. If there are people you DON"T want, then perhaps make that clear as well, I'm sure a professional could word it well - but if you think parents are too old, live too far from your daughter's established network etc, best to make that known.
Best speak to someone I think. And don't forget to consider future scenarios, like having more children.
There was a legal stationers in Chancery Lane in London and in the window was a picture of a large, well fed, prosperous barrister raising a glass and saying "Here's to the man who makes his own Will!"
You really need to ensure that the guardians at least have the option of drawing down funds to help support your child until adulthood. People's health, personal and financial situations can and do change.
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