Gifts in Wills – Frequently Asked Questions
We’ve put together some of the frequently asked questions about writing or amending a Will but remember, we are always here if you would like to discuss anything further.
Why should I make a Will?
Having an up-to-date Will is the only way to ensure your family, friends, and the charities you care about are provided for in the way you want. Without a Will, the law decides where your money and possessions will go and sorting your affairs can be costly for your family after you die.
What types of gifts can I leave in my Will?
Pecuniary gifts are specified sums of money, often referred to as cash gifts.
Residual gifts are a percentage of total value of your estate, after the cash gifts and specific items have been distributed.
Specific gifts are things you own, such as jewellery, items of furniture or your house.
What is a beneficiary?
These are people who will benefit from your Will in some way – maybe with a cash gift, objects you own or a share of your estate. A beneficiary of your Will cannot also witness your Will for you.
Who can witness my Will?
Your will must be signed by you, and witnessed by two independent people, who must not be benefiting from your Will. You don’t need to know them but they must see you sign and date your Will.
Who can be an Executor of my Will?
We suggest that it would be wise for you to consider choosing a trusted family member, friend, Solicitor or professional adviser to be appointed as your Executor in your Will, as these individuals will have personal knowledge about your circumstances and will be better placed to ensure that your wishes are carried out as you intend at the appropriate time.
Please note that as St. Luke’s Hospice is not a registered trust corporation, and is only a registered charity, we are unable to act as your Executor or Legal Personal Representative.
What information do I need to include when leaving a gift?
If you choose to leave a gift to St Luke’s Hospice the following information may be helpful:
The name of our charity- ‘St Luke’s Hospice (Harrow and Brent) Limited’.
Our registered charity number- 298555.
Our address: St Luke’s Hospice, Kenton Grange, Kenton Road, Harrow, HA3 0YG.
Why do I need a solicitor?
If you write your Will yourself and it is not legally correct it can cause costly problems for your family. We always recommend consulting a solicitor or Will writer. You can write a simple Will or mirror Will for couples for free throughout 2023 with our partner Will writers, for more information on how to obtain this offer click here. You can also write your Will using our online Will writing partner services, Guardian Angel, Kwil and Make a Will, for more information click here.
How can I amend my Will?
Do not amend your Will yourself as it will become invalid. You can write a codicil which is a document that amends (rather than replaces) a Will. The codicil must also abide by the same legal requirements as the original Will. It must also have two witnesses who do not benefit from the Will in any way. It is more common now to rewrite the whole Will as codicils can adversely affect a Will if incorrectly written and witnessed.