It may not matter at all to the deceased – unless they are able to look down ‘from above’ and tut-tut about what happens ‘below’. However, it could cause chaos to those left behind as they struggle to make sense of what to do next.
The burden of deciding usually falls on an administrator to get the ball rolling, and this is typically the late person’s spouse or their child. If the spouse is unable to cope, or the eldest child is younger than eighteen years, then someone else is going to have to chart a course through the rules of intestacy.
The Added Complications of Unmarried Partners
The UK estate system is still firmly tied by the apron strings to the tradition of marriage. Many couples – especially Gen Z and the Millennial’s have pushed the idea aside as a money-making racket as they generally see business.
Other couples don’t tie the knot officially because they are LGBT+, or simply could not be bothered to marry although all of them could nowadays. Not having a will could mean an unmarried partner walks away with nothing, while a step aunt with a glint in her eyes could take an ocean cruise for a year.
More Joys of Not Leaving a Will Behind When You Die
Two family members may claim equal rights to be your administrator, and hold things up while they bicker endlessly. While chaos continues, your funeral could be delayed while your empty home is wide open to sticky fingers.
Why put yourself through all this, when solicitors draft wills for free in the hope they get their slice of the action later as executors? If you dislike putting money in lawyers’ pockets, then non-profits like Will Aid will sort it for you in exchange for a donation to charity.
What Happens if You Leave No Qualifying Family Behind?
The Crown snaps up the lot and the Treasury Solicitor decides what happens to it next. Your hard-earned money could end up in a slush fund they could spend on a government project with which you fiercely disagree.
Your unmarried partner might have to vacate the home you happily made together, just because they wanted to keep it in your name. To make matters worse, your pet project of helping somebody by paying their rent dies with your forever like their hopes.
And if you do happen to have a qualifying family member they could blow the whole lot in a night trying to double it up at a casino. Honestly – and that’s why we wrote this post – not leaving a will behind can turn out to be a dumb thing to do.
It is also one of the few decisions in life you can’t reverse out, unpick or otherwise sort after you die. However, if you do decide to have a will, then you can have your own way with your money, and you can change your mind as often as you like while you are still alive.
The Main Advantages of Leaving a Will
- You can choose who manages your estate, and what happens to your property, investments, and possessions
- The government and the step aunt with a glint in her eye can’t get their hands on the wealth you laboured for all your life.
We’re not insisting you have a will. We don’t do wills, and we wouldn’t make a pound out it. It’s just we’ve seen the results of not having a will in so many of the probate valuations and clearances we have done.