This New Year make a resolution to write a Will

If you're the parent of babies, toddlers or school age children, making a will is probably the last thing on your mind. But, unfortunately, death does happen. A will can help provide for your children after you've gone and ensure they are cared for in line with your wishes.

Writing a will has a number of implications and perhaps the most important one is that it grants you the ability to stipulate how your assets should be distributed and allows you to ensure that your dependents are provided for. If you die without a will, the state will decide who gets what and how much, causing more distress to your loved ones.

For parents with children under legal age (18), making a will and appointing a legal guardian is vitally important. If a will has not been made or if a guardian has not been appointed at the time of your death, then the court will select one. Although the Court takes into account the child's best interests, there is no guarantee who they will appoint. Choosing the right guardian for your children can be very difficult and you are the best person for that job. Appointing a guardian is the best way of ensuring that your children are looked after by the person you choose. It is important to check with your proposed guardian before making your will so that you can be certain that they are willing to act as a guardian.

In today's modern family, the presence of children from a previous marriage or relationship is a common occurrence. At the moment stepchildren are not automatically able to inherit, unless they have been legally adopted by you. If you would like them to inherit it is essential that you document it in your will.

For more information on making a will, please contact Emsleys' Wills & Probate team on 0113 201 4900 or email

Helen Gott

Written by

Helen Gott

Director & Head of Wills & Probate

Helen is a solicitor, Director and Head of the Wills & Probate department at Emsleys Solicitors. Since qualifying in 2010, Helen has specialised exclusively in the area of Wills & Probate and is described as "very knowledgeable" in The Legal 500 2018-19. Helen is an expert in wills,...

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