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Changes to the Intestacy Rules

A summary on the change which came into force in February 2020 which saw the statutory legacy increase for spouses.

If you do not plan for your future by writing a Will, any assets you leave behind will pass per the Rules of Intestacy. The Rules of Intestacy currently dictate that, if you have a spouse and children, the surviving spouse will inherit the first £250,000 value of your estate (not including chattels) and the rest will fall to your children.

As of tomorrow, the 6th of February 2020, this figure will raise to £270,000.

Although this increase may be welcomed, it is advisable not to let the intestacy rules dictate the distribution of your estate. We are fortunate enough to have testamentary freedom under English law and it is always best policy to utilise this ability by ensuring your assets are governed according to your wishes.

Some down sides to not having a Will may be:

  • The application of the rules of intestacy may not be the most tax efficient way to apportion your estate
  • The distribution of your estate may not be as you wish
  • It may mean that your home needs to be sold to satisfy inheritance tax debts
  • If you are not married to your partner, they will not inherit any of your estate

By instructing one of our expert solicitors to draft your Will, you can ensure your estate is inherited exactly as you choose.

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