Wills and Lasting Powers of Attorney… Misconceptions we often hear
20 April 2022 by Rachael Fleet
We often have clients attend who have been ‘meaning to sort this out for years’. We know clients can often delay going to see a solicitor or only visit us if they really have to.
Many assume they do not need advice or the law will look after their personal circumstances, whilst true for many, this is not always the case and a Will and a Lasting Power of Attorney will ensure your wishes are followed correctly.
Here are some of the things we hear clients say to us all too often:
“We are common law husband and wife, we have been together for years”
Unfortunately in England and Wales a ‘common law spouse’ is not recognised by law.
If you die without a Will the rules of intestacy will apply and these rules will not acknowledge your partner unless you are married or in a civil partnership. You will need a Will to make provision for your partner.
When our clients mention ‘common law spouse’ we often talk to them about inheritance tax. Tax allowances are transferable between spouses and civil partners but not between unmarried partners. We would be happy to discuss and review your inheritance tax position with you.
“I am fine – I don’t need to make a Lasting Power of Attorney now!”
The idea is that you prepare a Lasting Power of Attorney whilst you are well, so you can use it in the event you are ever unwell, in an accident or lose mental capacity.
There are two types of Lasting Powers of Attorney
- Property and Financial Affairs
- Health and Welfare
See our Lasting Power of Attorney Guides for more information: Lasting Power of Attorney (fjg.co.uk)
“My next of kin will act for me.”
This is another misconception, your next of kin will not have the authority to manage your assets for you. Your bank will need to see a registered Lasting Power of Attorney to allow anyone to act on your behalf. And not just the bank… it may be any of the following that need to be managed for you;
Would your loved ones know how to manage your home, keep it insured, pay your utility bills and council tax?
Would they be able to deal with your pension income and any other income?
They would need a Lasting Power of Attorney to do so.
What happens when a dentist wishes to sell their practice but the lease is due to expire? Leah Groves explains opt… https://t.co/mPGwLm93PP3 days
This week marks Mental Health Awareness Week. It can be scarily easy to fall into the trap of your own mind when ba… https://t.co/KIC8JZQh6F4 days