Wills, Power Of Attorney & Family Protection Trusts
Ashmax Associates | Independent Financial Advice
The Importance Of A Will
We cannot overemphasise the importance of having a valid will in place. If you don't have a will, the law decides how your estate is passed on and this might not be in line with your wishes. Of course, it is possible to write a will yourself, but if you choose not to seek expert advice, you may find that despite your best intentions, the document is open to misinterpretation and ultimately not valid in the eyes of the law.
Our independent advisors can talk to you about your family and personal circumstances - including your assets and who you would like your executors to be - and who you would like to benefit under your will.
Once we understand your personal requirements our expert team will draft your will document. Once this draft has been approved, we will provide a bound copy of your will plans plus a duplicate copy for your records and will oversee the signing of your documents to ensure that this part of the process is carried out correctly.
We can also arrange secure storage and if you choose this option, detailed instructions on how to access your documents will be provided for you and your executors to keep.
The person who makes the will
A way of managing assets for people
The person who carries out the testator's wishes
Something that a person or company owns
A person to whom a gift is left
A voluntary transfer of property or of a property interest from one individual to another
A person who manages a trust set up for a beneficiary
The net worth of a person at any point in time alive or dead - the sum of a persons assets
A will written with the guidance of an expert can help to reduce the amount of inheritance tax that might be payable on the value of your property and any capital you decide to leave behind.
Power Of Attorney
A will protects your beneficiaries' interests after you die, but a lasting power of attorney protects your own interests while you are still alive, and up to the point when you die. A lasting power of attorney is vital for anyone - regardless of age - who has money and assets to protect and/or wants someone to act in their best interest in terms of healthcare choices should they be unable to make decisions for themselves.
There are two types of lasting power of attorney
Property & Financial Affairs
Health & Welfare
If you are still asking yourself why you need a lasting power of attorney, consider the prospect of a complete stranger making decisions about your money, your home or your health and wellbeing - including where you live - while your family is powerless to do anything to protect you.
If you wait until you are no longer mentally able to act for yourself, the Court of Protection may no longer allow a lasting power of attorney to be set. Instead, your family will have to apply to the court for a deputyship order. This means that they are likely to have to account for their every action and every penny spent on your behalf - including where joint bank accounts are concerned.
It can be very difficult and having to apply for a deputyship can also be a long and expensive process at a time when your family is already deeply distressed about what have happened to you. Furthermore, it should not be assumed that one spouse can act for the other just because they are married. The court may not see it that way. A spouse often needs legal authority to act for the other - through a lasting power of attorney.
Our first step is sit down and talk with you about your personal wishes. Once we understand what your requirements are our expert team will draft your lasting power of attorney documents.
Once the documentation process has been completed, we will ensure your documents are registered with the Office of the Public Guardian.