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Estate Planning for Retired Couples

No matter what our age or circumstances, planning for life after we’re gone is never easy and the older we get, the more likely we are to put off planning for that eventuality. We at Thomas Bradley are here to assist anyone,- including those who are/who are considering retirement – with gaining the peace of mind that comes with be prepared for the unfortunate eventuality of death.

Types of Wills for Retired Persons The most popular type of Will for couples is a standard Mirror Will – this is where both Wills are identical. They tend to follow the pattern of, everything to the spouse and whom failing the children of the couple. The other type of Will for couples is a non-Mirrored Will – this is where both Wills are not identical and do not follow normal patterns. Common patterns of a non-Mirrored couples Will is leaving everything to the spouse in the first instance, but each spouse having their own children in the second instance. This is becoming more and more common with the new modern family. Modern families are also known as ‘blended’ families, which basically means those families where each partner/spouse has children from previous relationships/marriages.

The Importance of a Will for Retired Persons By the time a person has reached retirement age, it is possible that they’ve accumulated a fair number of assets (i.e., a family home, shares, stocks, bonds, savings, pensions) and it is extremely important to have provisions in place so that those assets can be protected at all costs so that when the time comes, those who are supposed to inherit, do. One of the most important reasons to keep an up-to-date Will for any person, especially those who are retired, is the ever-changing fickleness of life that no doubt everyone has experienced one way or another.

How to Get a Will When you decide the time is right an you are ready to begin the process of setting up a Will, you should first put in a considerable amount of thought to who you trust the most to act out your wishes when you are no longer able to do so – in the first instance, a persons primary executor tends to be their spouse/civil partner then their substitutes tends to be any children. We highly suggest that you do not nominate a person without their knowledge as this can be a stressful role for a person to take on and the nominated person should be fully aware of their responsibilities before you nominate them to act as your executor.

You should then consider who you would like to benefit from your estate and how you would like them to inherit (for example, are they inheriting from your residue, or are they receiving a gift of money/property/jewellery – if so, are they inheriting at a certain age?) This is also where you should consider if you are leaving any gifts to charities which are close to your heart.

If you have children/guardianship over a child who is under the age of 16/18, then you can nominate a person who you trust to take care of them until they reach adulthood after you pass away. Again, we highly suggest that your nominated person (s) are fully aware of what being your child’s guardian will entail.

An optional step you can either include in your Will or in a separate letter to your executors/family is detailing your funeral instructions so that your loved ones are aware of how you would like your life to be celebrated.

The final step is enlisting the help of a dedicated and experienced firm who understands your situation to assist you in the drawing up and signing of your Wills. Get in touch with us today by using our Get in Touch service or by calling us on 0330 390 9200 to arrange an appointment with one of our trusted advisors.


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