This year has seen a great deal of change in the country’s leadership, including the ascension of a new King to the throne.
Not everyone is a royalist, but the way in which the monarchy system reacted to the Queen’s death and the smooth transition of King Charles into his role as the new Monarch was seamless. It can only be assumed that the main reason for this is years of meticulous planning and preparation.
Whilst few families are like the Royal Family, one positive lesson we can take from their lead is the awareness that all family members have in relation to the succession plans. By having set plans and ensuring these are known by the necessary members of the family, steps can be taken to prepare, therefore allowing a smoother process when the time comes.
Here we look at how succession planning can be used in families to help create a more certain future.
Making a Will
We all have multiple facets to our personal affairs that would need resolving in the event of our death. From our share in property ownership to personal savings, every aspect of personal finances needs to be dealt with during probate. Making a will allows you to make provisions for each aspect in a way that you are happy.
The fallback of the rules of intestacy will often not allow for an estate to be distributed how you would have wished. Furthermore, relying on the rules of intestacy will often delay matters and can make for a more complex picture during the probate process.
Making a will not only allow for certainty and peace of mind, it can also act as a useful exercise for tax and/or inheritance tax planning, allowing greater efficiency and more effective navigation of the rules.
Of course, reviewing a will periodically is just as important. Your family or personal circumstances may have changed since the will was first drafted, or new laws may be applicable, which means a review would stand to benefit your beneficiaries.
Having Lasting Powers of Attorney
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) allows you to take control of succession plans by nominating an individual/people you would like to manage your affairs should you no longer have the capacity to make decisions. By nominating your deputy/deputies for your finances and/or health and welfare, it is possible for a smooth and quick transition to take place. Rather than having to wait for many weeks for the courts to make a decision, therefore leaving your affairs in limbo and potentially with little or no access to funds that may be needed for care or treatment, LPAs means you can designate a deputy in advance to take over as and when they are required.
Whilst associated with old age illnesses such as dementia, a lack of capacity can also arise at any age as a result of an accident or illness.
For more information or to discuss making your own succession plans, please get in touch.
Jill Waddington is a solicitor specialising in private client law at O’Donnell Solicitors. Jill and her team can be appointed to assist with wills, LPAs, or any aspect of planning for your future. Please contact Jill Waddington on 01457 761320.