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Did you enjoy the festive break? Have you made any New Year Resolutions and have you broken them yet or not even got round to carrying them out?

Perhaps you intend to lose weight, get fit, de-clutter the house, meet up more regularly with friends and relatives, take up a new hobby or sport, get on top of your paperwork or sort out putting your affairs in order.

Over the holidays did you hear the news of new jobs, moving homes, business start ups, new partners, forthcoming weddings or expectant babies?

Did you find out about relationships breaking up, redundancies or someone’s business going bust?

Did you meet old friends and relations and were you perhaps surprised in the decline, physically or mentally, of some of them?

On New Years Eve, if not on Christmas Day, you may have drank a toast to old acquaintances such as relatives, friends and colleagues who may have died during the passed year or have become very poorly.

The whole meeting up or otherwise of family and friends over the holidays perhaps focused your mind on updating or sorting out your finances, property and legal affairs so they are in a fit and proper state for the challenges of the future.

Now take a couple of minutes to answer the following questions:-

  • Have you got a Will?
  • Is your current Will fit for purpose?
  • Do you need to review your Will in the face of changing circumstances affecting you or your potential beneficiaries, or your executors?
  • Should your executors or their substitutes be replaced, are you still friendly with them or have they moved away, died or are now too frail or ill to act?
  • Do you know anything about Inheritance Tax – do you know whether you are affected by it?
  • Have you made any sizeable gifts to relatives or friends recently, such as a deposit for a house, do you know for sure whether your gift may affect your exposure to Inheritance Tax and do you know what records of the gift you should keep?
  • Do you know who for sure, will inherit your estate, if you haven’t already made a Will?
  • Do you know what would happen to your assets on your death?
  • Do you know if the person you are cohabiting with, will inherit your estate, especially if you are not divorced from your spouse?
  • Have you children or other beneficiaries who are,or may be soon, going through a divorce, bankruptcy or are on means tested benefits?

Have you any idea how such circumstances could affect them should they inherit part or all of your estate?

Finally

  • Are you a person who prefers to tempt fate by keeping your head in the sand about any of the above points?

… Or

  • Are you a person who wants peace of mind and the certainty of knowing you have done all in your power to have an effective Will in place and taken all the necessary steps to avoid unnecessary Inheritance Tax, mitigate against potential costs of long-term care and have the right Power of Attorney in place for others to look after your affairs, should you become incapable of managing them in the future

You owe it to yourself and to your family to ensure you take all steps to get any of the above issues affecting you, into ship-shape order sooner rather than later.

The first step is to book yourself in for an initial free appointment with one of Gorvins’ solicitors for an initial consultation.

Why don’t you set yourself a deadline to do this, say within the next 6 weeks, so you can then relax and look forward to Spring-time, with another weight off your shoulders.