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Clare
Clare, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 34277
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practice since 1985 with a wide general experience.
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Complex Will questions (UK) Don't worry, I'm not asking

Resolved Question:

Complex Will questions (UK)Don't worry, I'm not asking someone to draft up a will for me!
I do however have some questions on just how complex a will ought to be, before it would be considered silly, or really difficult to legally prepare or execute?--------- This is a rough draft of the will I'd like to have ----------1) All computer equipment at my main residence at to [Person 4] (this is basically leaving ownership of my online sole-trader business)
2) The remaining contents of my main residence to [Person 1]
3) Ownership of my main residence to be left to [Charity YYY]- For my remaining estate, I wish to leave gifts, strictly in the following order, until nothing is remaining
- Any beneficiary who is deceased forfeits their gift.
- All fixed cash amounts are quoted as of 23rd September 2016, and should be inflation adjusted5) £30000 to [Charity ZZZZZ]
6) £50000 to [Person 1]
7) [Person 2] Trust Fund
- £10000 to be paid once they reach the age of 25
- £20000 to be paid once they reach the age of 30
8) [Person 3] Trust Fund
- £10000 to be paid once they reach the age of 25
- £20000 to be paid once they reach the age of 30
9) [Person 4] - £20000
10) [Person 5] - £20000
11) [Person 6] - £20000
12) [Person 7] - £20000
13) [Person 8] - £10000
14) [Person 9] - £10000
15) [Person 10] £1000016) Anything remaining after the above gifts is left to [Person 1]
17) If [person 1] is deceased then the remainder should enter [Person 2] and [Person 3]'s Trust Funds, to be paid out only when they reach the age of 30--------------------------
So here are my questions
--------------------------1) Can I structure my will in this way, or would this be viewed as just horrendously complicated for a will?
My assets are likely to be quite different from what it is now, and so I'd really prefer to leave fixed amounts, rather than base it on a percentage of my estate2) Can I leave fixed amounts in my will, but also specify they are inflation adjusted like I have done above?
The value of £10000 in 30 years time would be very different compared what it would be if I was hit by a bus tomorrow.3) My will is structured so if a beneficiary is deceased, they forfeit their benefit entirely (rather than it just going to their next of kin).
Is this something I can legally do in my will, or would the law override this and it would just go to the next of kin anyway?4) Due to the complexity of my will, I would like the executor to be a solicitor.
How can I ensure I get a good deal here, I have heard horror stories that some solicitors will take a big percentage of the estate for acting as executors.
Is it possible to agree a fixed amount (inflation adjusted?), or maybe even pay upfront?5) Two beneficiaries (currently children) would receive funds once they reach a certain age (presumably this would be done via trust funds - but these don't yet exist).
Would the executor be able to create these trust funds if the beneficiaries were both under the age of 30, and how do I ensure they choose something reasonably competitive rather than just some ultra low interest account, or an uncompetitive provider they might have business ties with ?Thanks
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your question

My name is ***** ***** I shall do my best to help you.

Complex yes - impossible no.

1. It would be regarded as complicated - but that is your prerogative. It will however cost more to administer that usual

2. You can but that is very complicated (see above) - hence the usual percentage option. However it can be done

3. You can do this - it is not unusual - however if you are leaving it to a child of YOURS you will need specific wording to ensure that S33 of the Wills Act does not apply

4. Neither of the options are viable. Probably best to chose a larger firm and develop a relationship with them.

5. Yes this is possible and you can word the Will accordingly

All of this assumes that you are not in Scotland

Please ask if you need further details

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Clare,Thankyou for your advice.
Could I clarify a few answers please, and I'll be happy accept your response?> 1. It would be regarded as complicated - but that is your prerogative. It will however cost more to administer that usualCost to administer means the upfront cost to prepare the will, and then increased cost to execute it too?> (regarding paying an upfront payment to a solicitor, to act as executor...)
> 4. Neither of the options are viable. Probably best to chose a larger firm and develop a relationship with them.Ok. So I assume the executor (assuming I choose a solicitor) would nearly always be demanding a percentage of my estate, on my death, rather than any fixed fee arrangement?What sort of rough percentage would be considered 'market rate' (say, for a very simple will)?
Do you have an rough estimate of what the rate could be for my (more complex) will?
Right now, if I approached a solictor and they asked for 8%, I would have no idea if this is competitive or extortionate.> 3. You can do this - it is not unusual - however if you are leaving it to a child of YOURS you
> will need specific wording to ensure that S33 of the Wills Act does not applyNeither of the children in my will are mine (they are my sisters).
This would mean S33 does not apply at all?> All of this assumes that you are not in ScotlandNo, I'm in England.
Thankyou for your advice so far.
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.

1. I meant in terms of the eventual carrying out of your wishes - it is likely to be long and complicated!

4. It remains common to charge both an hourly rate and a percentage BUT it is no longer universal. It is not about the complexity of the Will it tends to be about theamount of the estate - 1/2% to 1% is not unusual on top of the usual hourly rate

3 Correct it does not apply at all

Clare and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Clare,Very useful advice, will accept your answer shortlyThankyou
Paul