Else’s specialist Wills solicitors answer the question “What are the advantages of making a Mirror Will?”
So, you and your partner would like to create Wills that protect each other and your young children in the event that one or both of you may die?
A very wise decision, but have you considered having Mirror Wills created for you?
Mirror Wills are similar documents created on behalf of a married, civil partnership or unmarried couple. They are virtually identical Wills where one member of the couple leaves their estate to other in the event of their death.
Else’s expert Will solicitors in Burton upon Trent, have outlined some of the reasons why Mirror Wills are advantageous for some couples.
Your Partner Inherits Everything
As we mentioned earlier, Mirror Wills are very similar documents drafted for couples that mutually agree to leave their whole estate to the last surviving partner if one of them dies.
By agreeing to a Mirror Will you are protecting your partner’s financial future, as they would not necessarily be legally entitled to inherit your estate if you are unmarried.
You Can Provide For Your Children
A Mirror Will can include instructions for both partners’ estates to be left to any surviving children should the couple die at the same time.
If you have any children below the age of 18 you can appoint guardians for them in your Mirror Wills, should both parents die. You can also appoint trustees that will protect your estate until your children are old enough to inherit it.
You Can Name Additional Executors
Usually, the partners are the sole beneficiary in each other’s mirror Will and are also each other’s Executor.
An executor is a person named by the maker of a Will to carry out the directions of the Will.
In the case of Mirror Wills, additional executors should be named so that both partners’ wishes can be carried out if they die at the same time.
Additional executors should ideally be a person trusted by both partners. This may be a family member, a friend or a professional adviser. Each partner is entitled to choose different executors if they wish.
Mirror Wills Do Not Have To Be Completely Identical
As we have already stated, the key element of Mirror Wills is that both partners have similar desires and terms in their Wills.
However, they can have some small differences. When it comes to estate administration and inheritance issues they need to match but they can have some minor variances like additional executors.
You Can Avoid Inheritance Tax
When it comes to Inheritance Tax everything can pass from one spouse to another tax free. The Nil Rate Inheritance Tax band is transferable to the surviving spouse.
So when it comes to Mirror Wills, the Inheritance Tax allowance of the deceased is passed to the surviving spouse. This amount is then added to the last surviving spouse’s allowance when they die.
Therefore, if the estate is valued at less than double the current Inheritance Tax Nil Rate band (currently £325,000), there will be no inheritance tax to pay upon the second spouse’s death.
You Can Revoke A Mirror Will If Circumstances Change
Each party to a Mirror Will understands that it is the right of the other person to change their own Will in the future.
If circumstances change because, for example, a relationship has broken down, additional executors have died, or one of the partner’s has had a change of heart, then both Wills need to be updated.
If you would like more information and advice about Wills for young families, please contact our specialist Wills solicitors in Burton on Trent, on 01283 526200. Alternatively, you can send us a message and we will get in touch at a time that suits you.