This week we sadly saw the death of our Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom and commonwealth realms. The Queen passed away at the grand age of 96 years old and the crown has now passed to her son, the new King Charles III. The Queen was a symbol of duty, dignity, grace, and respect for millions of people across the globe who all mourn her loss. But first and foremost, before anything else, she was a mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother and it is her family whom her death has hit hardest.
The events following the Queen’s death is something that has been planned and orchestrated over and over again over the years, so that everything goes as smoothly as possible with as little hassle and struggle as possible. Unlike the Queen, most people who pass away do not have an entire country supporting their family and funeral arrangements. That’s why it is so important for you and your family to financially prepare for life’s biggest and most unknown journey.
Being forward thinking enough to financially prepare for your own death is something that we as financial advisors strongly recommend and promote. Being on top of the only certainty in life is incredibly selfless and more people need to understand the value. So, in this blog, we will talk about a few things that we can help you get in place, before it’s too late.
Financially Prepare For Your Death With A Will
As we have already said, a shocking 60% of people in the UK don’t have a will in place! A will is a very useful document that everyone should have in place, but what is a will exactly? How does it work, and how do you get one? A will is a document created while a person is still alive that that documents and clarifies what will happen to all monetary and non-monetary assets owned by a person, after they die. In your will, you can specify who you want your money to go to, who you want your property, your car, your priceless antiques, your collection of beanie babies to go to. Anything you can think of, you can list it in your will so that your loved ones are able to benefit after your death.
Without a will in place, your belongings and finances are in a financial limbo of sorts. No one has proof that they are entitled to your things and if serious money is involved, they could end up being some hostility. There are horror stories of once close family, brothers and sisters, fighting over property or savings that wasn’t included in a will. Irreparably destroying the family unit.
Getting a will is quick, easy, and can be fairly cheap to set up. All you need to do is contact a financial advisor who provides a will service. Now, not all financial advisor offer will writing so it is very important that you speak to the right one. A financial advisor must be specifically qualified to write wills and your best bet is to get one who is experienced and knowledgeable about the will writing process.
When you speak to a will writer they will go through more or less the same process of running through your finances that any other financial advisor will. They will speak to you about your income, your outgoings, your assets, and your family beneficiaries (your children, siblings, grandchildren). With your will writer, you will decide who you want your possessions and money to go to in the event of your death and the writer will go away to draft up your will.
A copy of your will can then be sent to anyone you want. A copy should always be sent to your solicitors office and to your family as well as keeping a copy in your belongings so that everyone who needs access to the will, has access should you die suddenly.
How Much Does A Will Cost UK?
The actual cost of setting up a will varies from writer to writer, but the benefit of getting one in place immensely outweighs the cost. The cost of setting up a professional will can be as little as £75 or as much as £750 depending on the will writer you use, the amount of assets that need to be recorded and documented, and the complexity of the will. There are some services online that offer cheaper digital wills but we would not recommend these ones as they will not be as thorough or as diligent with your finances as you need.
Financially Prepare For Death With Life Insurance
A huge part of our work is arranging insurance for our clients. We provided advice and guidance on lots of different types of insurance because we want all our clients and their families to be protected if anything happens to them. A lot of the insurances that we arrange protect people and their families if they are suddenly unable to earn a living or work due to illness or injury however we also help to arrange insurances for people in case they pass away unexpectedly or develop a terminal or life threatening illness or condition.
We can set up life insurance for people so that if they die, their dependents can receive money to help them. For example, if a full time working parent with two young children suddenly passes away from a heart attack. That family has not only devastatingly lost a member of their family, but they have also lost a provider and a large source of income for the family. By setting up a life insurance policy through a financial advisor, you can ensure that your family will receive either a regular income or a lump sum in the event of your death. When you speak to your financial advisor they will help you to determine how much money your family will need, should you pass away. How much money they will need to be financially secure if your income and support is lost.
They will then work out how much you will need to pay per month for your insurance and make sure that it is manageable for you to keep up with. They will then apply for your insurance with a recommended insurance provider. The insurance provider will assess your application and make sure that they are happy with your needs and will make the decision on how they want to issue the terms of their insurance. Once everything has been agreed, they will issue their terms and you will have an insurance policy in place.
You will then pay into your insurance policy per month at an agreed amount (that will need to be reviewed regularly by your financial advisor). And, if anything does happen to you that is covered by your policy such as a heart attack or a stroke, your beneficiaries will receive a pay out from the insurance provider.
To illustrate to you how important life insurance is, we will talk about a real life example from a few years ago. A fit an healthy former professional sports person passed away unexpectedly from a massive heart attack at the age of 42. The heart attack was caused by a heart condition that he was unaware of and no medical scans or checks in the past had identified. He left behind a fiancé and two children under the age of 10. The person who passed away was the breadwinner of the family so when he died, the soul source of income for the family ended.
Thankfully a few years before, while arranging a mortgage, the man’s financial advisor encouraged him to set up some life insurance policies. Incredibly, the insurance policies totalled over £1 Million in benefits in the event of unexpected death. The man’s fiancé and two young children were provided with over £1 Million in several lump sums over an 18 month period. Because the advisor helped the man financially prepare for his death, his family do not need to worry about money.
As you can see, financially preparing for death is so important and something that is easy to do through a financial advisor. If you or someone you know doesn’t have anything set up by way of financial protection, please give our advisors a call today to discuss your options. We are here to help.