Organising a will

Laura King from Gilson Gray LLP explains the reasons why you should organise a will.


Many people believe that when they die, their estate will pass to the right people automatically.  However, if you do not have a will, you lose control over who will inherit your estate, potentially to the detriment of your loved ones.  Your family may also face additional cost and strain, during what will inevitably be a difficult time.

Why should you make a will?

One of the most important documents you will ever sign is your will.  You will probably have some idea of what you would like to happen to your estate when you die, but have these ideas been clearly and legally recorded?  Some of the reasons for making a will are:

  • You can ensure that your children are cared for, and by whom, should the worst happen
  • You can control who inherits your estate and protect family members
  • A properly drafted will may save your estate/family substantial cost and is a crucial part of your overall estate planning or inheritance tax
  • A will can give you the peace of mind that comes from knowing that your affairs are in order.

Your Power of Attorney

Having a Power of Attorney in place is also very important.  If you become incapable of managing your affairs during your lifetime, a Power of Attorney allows you to appoint someone to deal with your affairs on your behalf.

Why do I need a Power of Attorney?

  • If you become unable to manage your own affairs, through illness, accident or old age, no one will have authority to deal with your financial or welfare matters on your behalf.  By signing a Power of Attorney, you can appoint someone to deal with your affairs, in the event that you are unable to do so at some point in the future
  • It provides peace of mind that things will be taken care of in the way that you would want.
  • A Power of Attorney can also allow someone to look after your affairs if you were out of the UK for an extended period
  • If you become incapacitated and do not have a Power of Attorney in place, one or more of your family and friends will have to instigate a court process to be appointed as a guardian.  This usually takes up to five months to be granted by the court and will cost at least £4,000.  A Power of Attorney avoids this.

For more information on how we can help you, please visit our website or call our Head of Private Client, Laura King on 0131 516 5359.