When should I write or make a will?

It’s a question we’ll all have to ask ourselves: when is the best time to write a will? Is it something you do when you are old and don’t have many years left, or when you are young and don’t have many cares in the world? The midpoint of those two scenarios is most common for writing a will, but there’s nothing to say you shouldn’t do it earlier.

write a will

The truth is that there isn’t a specific ‘right’ time to write a will. Obviously leaving it too late can be bad idea, and so doing it as early in life as possible will most likely be preferable.

How early though? At 18, chances are you don’t have much to leave anyone, and you may not have a spouse or children to be beneficiaries. As you go through life, though, a will should be updated according to your changing circumstances. If you were to write a will before you were married, when you did marry, the marriage would automatically revoke your existing will and you’d need to write a new one to replace it. If you should divorce, you’d need to consider if your former spouse would still inherit your possessions following your death.

Changes to your will when circumstances change.

Firstly, by codicil where a supplement, amendment or addition is made to the will, or by actually making a completely new one to replace the old one. If several life-changing events coincide, that’s probably the time you should be thinking about updating.

Writing a will isn’t something you should be doing once and then forgetting about. With life and circumstances constantly changing, you must make sure that your will also changes and reflects what’s happening in your life and with whom you share your life, if you want those beneficiaries to benefit from your estate when you pass.

You must be of sound mind when you write your will, of course. It’s common for elderly people to suffer senility, but that doesn’t necessarily mean those that have it won’t be able to make a will. Many people with the condition are quite capable of understanding what they need to do. That is that they have to know what a will is and that they are making one. It’s essential that they understand the relationship that they have with the person who will benefit from the will. They also need to know what they own, and be able to make the decision of who gets what.

Writing a will when you’re of sound mind is obviously best. Our advice would be to do it early in your adult life, but keep in mind that you will need to be prepared to update it, or indeed replace it, whenever your life circumstances change.

If you would like to speak to us about writing your will, then please get give us a call or use our online contact form for a call back.


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