Gifts in Wills
Have you considered a Will, or is your existing Will old and need reviewing?
Having an up-to-date Will is important, whatever your current personal situation is. Your wishes, circumstances, and family arrangements can change over the years, and a Will ensures your personal requests are met after you pass away, your loved ones and the causes you care about are looked after, and the process is made easier for all involved.
Could you consider leaving a gift in your Will to Dementia Support?
By making special provision for Dementia Support in your Will, your gift can help people living with dementia in the future. Your gift will enable individuals, couples, families, and loved ones to better understand, cope, and be supported through their dementia journey.
Download your Gift in Will Guide
We’ve prepared a free, easy to read guide with lots of information about Wills (including the Frequently Asked Questions) and Dementia Support charity and the impact your donation can have. Please download your Giving a Gift in your Will guide or request a copy to be sent by post by contacting Mark via the details below.
Frequently Asked Questions about Wills
Here at Dementia Support, we want to support you in making your Will, and have provided answers to frequently asked questions by people who are unsure or want to know more about making a Will:
Do I need to make a Will? Why make a Will?An up-to-date Will is essential to ensure your personal wishes are met and that your loved ones and the causes you care about are looked after financially. This includes how to provide for your partner, and who you appoint as guardians to look after your children or dependents, if they are below 18 years of age when you pass away. If you haven’t left clear instructions, the Court may make these decisions. This can often take time and may cause concern for your loved ones. Making your Will ensures a smooth process to provide for those you want to. If you pass away without a Will, the government will coordinate the distribution of everything you own (your estate), without knowing your personal wishes. If you have no surviving relatives who can inherit under the rules of intestacy, your estate passes to the Crown. It is never too early to make your Will. If you’re over 18 you can make a Will which can be updated as your wishes, circumstances, and family arrangements change over the years.
How do I know what to leave in my Will?We often don’t realise or understand the potential value of our assets, and may wonder if it is worth making a Will or leaving a gift to charity. It is worth checking everything you have in your possession as you may be surprised. For example, do you own your own home, have life insurance, savings, a new car or private pension? Your Will is the only way to ensure those you care about benefit from your estate, assets, wealth, and/or belongings. When preparing a Will, you will go through all of this with a solicitor. It might sound daunting and challenging, but creating a checklist can be helpful. Once you have your total assets, you need to deduct the value of your debts to figure out the overall value of your estate. Then you can draw up a list of everyone you wish to benefit from your Will, from what, by how much, and in what way – and if you would like to give a gift to Dementia Support. It is important that you have a properly prepared and witnessed will if you want to have any say in what happens to your assets after you die.
How can I be sure my Will is valid and accurate? Do I need a solicitor?A Will is a legal document and trying to write your own can be difficult. You must also have the legal and mental ability to make or alter a valid will, to avoid it being declared illegal. If your estate and belongings are complicated to evaluate, a professional can help you ensure those you care about don’t pay any more Inheritance Tax than they need to. We recommend you use a solicitor or professional will-writer to make sure that your Will is prepared and approved by an experienced person and is legally correct. They can also advise you on the best people to formally witness and sign your Will. The cost can vary from one solicitor/will writer to another. On average, you could pay between £80 and £150 to arrange a new single Will, and slightly more for Mirror Wills, which are two standard Wills, ideal for a couple. If your Will is not straightforward the cost is likely to increase, but a solicitor can confirm this before proceeding. There are many professional Will writers and there are often discounts available, particularly throughout October and March.
What is an Executor?An executor is a person who is legally responsible for making sure the instructions in your will are carried out as you requested. Your ‘estate’ is everything you own including money, property, possessions, and any personal wishes regarding funeral arrangements. You can choose up to four executors, if there's more than 1 executor, all decisions must then be made jointly. Often, at least 2 executors are appointed, just in case one passes away or is otherwise unable to carry out their duties. Executors can be a friend, family, or a solicitor and can be someone who is named in your will. It's important you check with them to explain what’s involved and make sure that they're willing to take on this important role. A professional will-writer can help you to consider who is best for this role. If you don’t know anyone you feel would be suitable or willing to take on the role you could appoint a professional executor, such as a solicitor or an accountant. A professional executor will usually charge for their services which will be paid for out of your estate.
What is Inheritance Tax (IHT)?Inheritance Tax (IHT) is a tax that is charged on a portion of your estate at the time of your death. If the value of your estate (your assets minus your debts) including your home, is over £325,000, Inheritance Tax will be payable on the excess at a current rate of 40%. All gifts to charities, however, are exempt from Inheritance Tax and the value of your estate is calculated after the value of those gift(s) have been deducted. Currently, where 10% or more of an estate is left to charity a reduced rate of 36% IHT is applied. Planning your estate and making your personal wishes clear can reduce liability for inheritance tax and ensure that your family and friends inherit as you would wish. Everybody’s financial affairs are different, so we always recommend talking to your solicitor or financial advisor. By making special provision for Dementia Support in your Will, your gift can help people living with dementia in the future. Your gift will enable individuals, couples, families, and loved ones to better understand, cope, and be supported through their dementia journey.
Where can I start?Creating a checklist can help you with three important parts of your Will. (Please note, it is not a substitute to a Will and is not legally binding in any way). A – Calculate the value of your estate by listing the value of everything you own and subtracting the debts your owe. B - Decide who you would like to leave gifts to and what you want them to receive. C – Decide who you want to be your executor(s), and, if you have any children under 18 years of age, who you would like to be their Guardian(s)
External Provider Solicitor Clinics at Sage House
Cameron James Legal and Irwin Mitchell hold free information clinics at Sage House to help with Powers of Attorney (PoA), Wills, and Advanced Directives.
You can book an appointment from Sage House reception desk or over the phone. You will find advice and guidance on your personal circumstances and how you could progress.
The Impact of your Gift
Fiona, carer of her Mum:
“I would not, and I mean this hand on heart, I would not have got through the last 8 months without their support. I’m very aware of the immense difficulty and isolation a dementia diagnosis can bring and know only too well how vital the right support is. Thankfully, Dementia Support was there for us and is there for the whole family, and they’re determined to be there for the rising numbers of family’s who will need them in the future too.”
It is with great thanks to our kind supporters that we can offer such a variety of services.
Request a Free Physical Copy of our Gifts in Wills Guide
Fill out the form below to receive our free Gifts in Wills Guide in the post.