Making a Will: 5 further considerations

Making a Will: 5 further considerations

Wills, Estates and Succession Planning

We have already guided you on our top 5 decisions for including in a Will (haven’t seen it? Here it is link to previous article). But did you know that a Will can include so much more?

Here are another five considerations…

  1. Funeral Wishes – I want to be cremated / buried / donated to science…
    You may have strong views on how you wish your body to be disposed of in the event of death – these views may be based on personal, religious, ethical or environmental considerations. Whatever your wishes, you can include a declaration to that effect in your Will.

  2. Minor’s assets – What happens to the kids’ money?
    If your child inherits your assets whilst he/she is still a minor, you can name trustees in your Wills to deal with these assets on their behalf. In some jurisdictions the guardians would have this role (such as under UAE inheritance laws), however, in other jurisdictions there is the flexibility to appoint separate individuals, specifically to manage the children’s assets. This may be appropriate for example where the assets are significant or complicated to administer e.g. companies.

  3. Pets – Who is going to take care of Fido / Felix / Pat the Parrot?
    You may already have an understanding with friends or family as to who would inherit your pets in the event of your demise, however it is advisable to include a declaration to this effect in your Wills. It may also be appropriate to leave a designated cash amount for the care of your animals to ensure the individual can afford to care for them. It is important to note however, that some jurisdictions do not allow for the mention of pets in your Will (such as in the UAE). A separate letter of wishes can put in place instead.

  4. Corporate assets – Who will manage my company?
    It may be appropriate to deal with your corporate assets, e.g. shares in a company, separately to the rest of your estate. You may choose to leave your shares to fellow shareholders in return for a market value being paid to your family. Alternatively, you may leave your company to specific beneficiaries who are equipped to continue to run it in your absence, or who possess the same specialist skills as you. If you do not make a specific gift of your company then the shares would pass to your residuary beneficiaries resulting in your company being inherited by those who may not be best placed to run it.

  5. Specific personal assets – My handbag collection / watch collection / stamp collection
    If you have a beloved collection, or a treasured personal possession which you want to leave to a special person, you can include this in your Will.  It may even be appropriate to prepare a separate letter of wishes detailing the various items and including photos to ensure your executors and beneficiaries are absolutely certain which items you are referring to.

    Ultimately, it is advisable to seek specific legal advice from a licensed legal practitioner to ensure that the Will adequately represents your intentions, protects your assets and most importantly, your loved ones. If you already have a Will, perhaps you need to amend it? (Not sure? Read our previous article here link to previous article).

    Contact us for further information.