Making a Will FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions about Making a Will

What is a Will?

A Will is a legal document that allows you to specify who should benefit from your money, property and possessions after you’ve died. It’s very important that the wording used in your Will is clear and legally effective. Many people prefer to use a professional will writing service for this reassurance.

Do I need a Will?

If you die without a Will in England or Wales the law will decide who gets what. If you have no living family members, all your property and possessions will go to the Crown.

What if I have nothing to leave?

Virtually everyone has something to leave behind even if it’s just their personal possessions. However, even if you may not have much money or property now, that doesn’t mean that you will not have more to leave when you pass away at some point in the future. Do you play the lottery? Are you likely to receive an inheritance? As no one really knows when they are likely to die or how much they will own when they die, it’s recommended that the safest course of action is to get a Will written so that your wishes are clear.

What are Executors?

Executors are the people you name in your Will to carry out your wishes after you die. They will be responsible for all aspects of winding up your affairs after you’ve passed away such as arranging your funeral, notifying people and organisations that you’ve died, collating information about your assets and liabilities, dealing with any tax bills, paying debts and then distributing your estate to your chosen beneficiaries.
Professional executors can offer these benefits:

  • Immediate free advice and guidance for your next of kin to help avoid any confusion after you’ve passed away.
  • Following death, they’ll provide a fixed fee quote to your beneficiaries to carry out the agreed work.
  • A complete Estate Administration service so your loved ones do not need to worry about making mistakes or having the responsibility for dealing with your estate.

So, to recap Executors are either individuals or an organisation that you appoint within your Will to deal with all aspects of your estate after you’ve passed away. After applying for legal authority to deal with your estate (known as probate), the executors will ensure that all your assets are accounted for and paid into your estate and after any debts and funeral expenses have been paid, they will ensure that the estate will be distributed in accordance with your Will.

What is a guardian?

If you die leaving children under the age of 18 and there is no other person living who has parental responsibility, you can choose who you would like to be their guardian in your will. The guardian(s) will be responsible for looking after your children as they grow up, having control over their welfare, health and schooling.

What are witnesses?

Witnesses are people who see the act of signature and add their signatures and names to the Will to prove this. By law your Will needs two adult witnesses. The witnesses do not commit themselves to anything by adding their details; they are simply witnessing you signing the Will.

What if I have young children?

The first thing to consider is Guardianship. If your children are under 18 years old, then you can include in your Will the appointment of a Guardian to look after your children whilst they are under 18 years old. This appointment takes effect only if there is no one else with parental responsibility over your children when you pass away. The importance of appointing a Guardian is one of the main reasons why parents make sure they have a valid Will in place. You can also include your children as beneficiaries in your Will even though they are very young. When this occurs it is sensible to consider the age you would like your children to reach before being able to access their inheritance, typical ages 18, 21 or 25. Whilst the child is under that age then their inheritance is managed on their behalf by people called Trustees. These are people that can also be appointed in your will.

Can I include funeral wishes in my Will?

Yes. You can choose whether you owuld liek to be buried or crermated or have a naturail burial. you can go into as much detail as you like but bear in mind that this particular aspect of your Will is just an expression of a wish and is not legally binding. However, your executors will normally do theri est to ensure tour wishes are carried out.

What types of gifts can I include in my Will?

You can make all types of different gifts in your Will. For example, you may want to give an item of sentimental value to a particular person, or perhaps a fixed cash amount to a friend or favourite charity. Jewellery is the most often gifted item.

How much does a Will cost with you?

Nothing. Nada. Zero. Zilch. All wills created via this website are 100% free. There are no catches. There are no hidden costs.

Can I write a will online without a solicitor?

Yes. There is absolutely no need to use a solicitor to draw up your will. We have worked with expert legal advisors to ensure all our Wills are fully legal in terms of the wording. Most solicitors use a boiler plate template, whereas our system will ensure we create a fully personalised will for you.

Why should I use FreeWills?

Our unique software lets you create your own comprehensive fully legal last will and testament from the comfort of your own home, without you having to visit a solicitor's office. You can take as little or as long as you need to complete the process, and we provide you with helpful step by step guidance along the way. You will be pleased to know we are full members of the Society of Will Writers, and all our Wills are checked, vetted and aproved by solicitors.

How do you make money?

We make a small affiliate commission on optional add-on products, through partnerships with reputable companies; and through discreet advertising on the web site. We feel that if you make a will for free with us, you are more likely to use us for other services in the future.

What are the requirements to make a Will?

You have to be aged 18 or over; be 'of sound mind'; understand what is in your Will; and be making the Will voluntarily. For a will to be legally binding, when your Will is complete, you need to sign it in the presence of two witnesses (who can’t benefit from your Will), both of whom must add their own signatures. The correct wording and the correct signing and witnessing of the Will are what is needed to make it fully legal.

What kind of Will shall I get?

Our online will writing service generates a fully legal will that states what you would like to happen to your possessions when you die, names an executor(s), nominates guardians for your children if applicable, and specifies your funeral wishes. Our Will writing service is not suitable if you own or part own a farm, own a business, have property overseas, or where you have wishes that could be considered contentious.

Where should I keep my Will?

There are a number of options. You can either store your Will safely at home or you can pay for a Will storage service, or with the government’s Probate Service. We will email you further details of Will storage service options once you complete your Will with us.

Can I change my will?

Yes, you can easily make changes to your will. You can make as many changes as you like, for free.

What happens if I don't make a Will?

If you die without making a valid Will (also known as dying ‘intestate’), your estate goes to your ‘next of kin’ which is usually your husband or wife, or if you are unmarried, your children. If you have no family members close enough to inherit, the government will keep everything. Without a Will, your loved ones will have far more work to do after your death and it is highly likely that your possessions will not be distributed the way you would want. With no recognised document for the administration or distribution of your possessions, the government rules will stipulate who will inherit, and this typically results in negative tax consequences, heartache and lost time and money for your loved ones.
By writing a Will, you can make provision for both your new spouse or partner and your children and avoid potentially unnecessary disputes after your death.

Need to know more?

If you have any other questions about Wills, please contact us and we will do our best to help you.