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By July 11, 2023June 26th, 2024No Comments


Why should I make a Will?

A Will is a document that sets out what happens to a person’s possessions after they have died. A Will can be made at any point in a person’s life as long as they are over 18 years of age and of sound mind. A Will can provide peace of mind to all as it ensures family members will be left cared for, and it is a way to allow a deceased person’s family to respect their wishes in relation to their funeral and the administration of their estate (i.e. All of the assets that they own). It is extremely important to make a Will when you have children as you can appoint a guardian to ensure that any children under the age of eighteen are cared for in the event of both parents predeceasing their children.

What happens if I don’t make a professional Will?

If a person dies intestate (without a Will), or having incorrectly made a Will, their estate will be administered by the rules of intestacy rather than by the wishes of the deceased. The rules of intestacy are governed by the Succession Act and do not take into consideration the wishes of the testator (the person who wrote the Will). This may result in some family members not benefitting from your estate, for example an unmarried partner.

Although it is possible to make a ‘home-made’ Will, we would strongly advise against this due to the legal issues that can arise after the testator has died. A Will is a document which must be drafted in compliance with the Succession Act. Failure to make a professional Will can result in a poorly written document that is ambiguous and lacking clarity. This may result in your estate being administered incorrectly as the court will have to interpret your vague and unclear wishes, or a court may rule that your Will is partially or wholly void for uncertainty. This means that the rules of intestacy will apply when administering your estate and that your Will is invalid.

Common Issues with Home-Made Wills:

Although it may seem convenient and cheap to make a ‘home-made’ Will, if it is incorrectly written this will require more time and money to rectify. Home-made Wills usually generate two main types of issues:

  1. Issues with the Wording of the Will

Writing a Will is a complex process which requires the experience of a Solicitor. If the wording is at all vague or the Will lacks certain clauses, this will result in great difficulty for the executors of your Will (the people you nominate to administer your estate after you have died).

  1. Issues with the Execution of the Will

The execution of a Will refers to how a Will is written, signed and witnessed. If the rules created under the Succession Act are not complied with, this can result in partial or complete invalidity of the testator’s Will.

It is also important to note that a testator may not realise that a Will should be updated after marriage, divorce, and having children. A Will could also be challenged if the testator is ill at the time the Will was written. It is very important to seek professional legal advice to ensure that your Will cannot be challenged after your death for any of the above reasons.

The Benefits of a Professionally drafted Will:

A solicitor can ensure that a Will is correctly executed and that the wishes of the testator are respected. A professional Will can also provide for more complex legal arrangements, such as trusts, which can be created for more vulnerable beneficiaries. A solicitor will be able to advise a client the best way to draft their Will according to tax requirements to ensure that a beneficiary is not significantly taxed on a portion of the estate that they receive

Feel free to contact Dillon Solicitors on 01 296 0666 or to make an appointment with one of our Will solicitors.