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Reviewing your will makes sure it always reflects your wishes

Not only is it important to have a will, it is essential that your will is reviewed as your circumstances change.

In August 2018, the High Court heard a case concerning the estate of Mrs Campbell, a widow, who died in October 2015. Mrs Campbell had left the majority of her estate to her son and a legacy of £5,000 to her partner, Mr Banfield, with whom she had cohabited for a number of years.

By the time Mrs Campbell died, Mr Banfield was 63 years-old and partly disabled.

Had the terms of the will been adhered to, Mrs Campbell’s son would have been able to sell the house, leaving Mr Banfield homeless. Therefore, Mr Banfield made a claim against the estate to provide for his housing needs.

The claim was made under the Inheritance (Provision for family and dependants) Act 1975.

The court awarded Mr Banfield a life interest in half the proceeds from the sale of the property, giving him sufficient funds to purchase another property to live in. In addition, £20,000 was set aside in case the house had to be adapted for his needs.

In England and Wales it is possible to leave your estate to whoever you want. However, individuals who are covered by the Act, including someone who has cohabited with you for at least two years, can make a claim against your estate if they believe reasonable provision has not been made for them.

Katy Burgin, specialist wills and probate solicitor, commented: “It is important to review your will periodically to ensure it still fulfils your wishes. You should also take expert legal advice to ensure you have made adequate provision for loved ones and to prevent unwanted claims made against your estate from being successful.”

If you would like reassurance that your current will is still fit for purpose, call and make an appointment with one of our friendly professionals. They will give you all the help and guidance you need. The rest is up to you – no sales pitch or pressure, guaranteed.

Call 01302 320621

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