An estimated one in three families in the UK are “blended”, meaning they have a combination of parents, new partners and children from different relationships.They may also go on to have children together.
The importance of making a Will
Dying without a correctly drafted Will can cause a great deal of distress for those family members left behind at what is already a tough and emotional time. If you die without leaving a Will, the rules of intestacy decide who inherits your estate. Inheritance laws have fallen behind the times and do not account for blended families – which is why it’s so important that you make a Will.
Failure to make a Will when part of a blended family could lead to the children of either party being disinherited unless the child or children are adopted by their step-parent.
Furthermore, without making a Will and seeking professional advice, blended families face the risk of costly litigation disputes and putting a strain on the family relationships.
A professionally drafted Will can help reduce this risk and ensure that the right balance is achieved between providing fairly for all the members of the family.
Example based on my own situation
I am married with two daughters. I say two daughters but in fact one daughter is in the eyes of the law my “step-daughter”. She being my husband’s daughter from a previous relationship.
I have brought my step-daughter up as my own and view each of them the same but under the intestacy rules if my husband and I did not leave Wills, she would not fall under the definition of beneficiary according to the Intestacy Rules. Should I outlive my husband, on my death my estate would only pass to my own daughter.
If you would like assistance with drafting a Will that protects your family, please contact Laura Woods on 0151 548 7370 or at firstname.lastname@example.org