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Creating a Will and ensuring your legacy reflects who you are

Creating a Will and ensuring your legacy reflects who you are

June is Pride Month, a time for celebrating diversity, promoting equality, and affirming the rights of the LGBTQ+ community. At Ness Gallagher Solicitors, we believe that everyone deserves to have their voice heard and their wishes respected, not just in life but in their legacy. One way to ensure your values and wishes are honoured when you are no longer here is through a well-crafted Will.

A Will is a legal document that outlines how your assets should be distributed after your death. It provides clarity and direction to your loved ones and helps avoid potential disputes. For the LGBTQ+ community, a Will is particularly important in ensuring that your loved ones are taken care of and that your legacy aligns with your personal values.

1. Protecting your loved ones – without a Will, the law decides who inherits your estate (your property, money and possessions) after your death, which may not reflect your personal relationships, especially for LGBTQ+ individuals whose family structures can be diverse. A Will allows you to explicitly name your partner and ensures your partner, chosen family, or close friends receive what you intend for them.

2. Addressing specific needs – a Will can detail your wishes regarding funeral arrangements, the handling of personal items, donations to charity and more.

3. Avoiding family disputes – a clear and legally binding Will can help prevent disputes among family members, particularly if your choices may not align with traditional expectations. It provides legal protection for your decisions and reduces the risk of conflicts at what will be an already emotive time for family and friends.

Before speaking to a lawyer to create your Will, it’s important to get your documents in order and it is also a good idea to speak to family about your wishes.

  • Take stock of everything you own, including property, bank accounts, investments, and personal items. Also, list any debts or liabilities you have.
  • Choose who will inherit your assets. This could be your partner, family members, friends, or charities that align with your values.
  • Select someone you trust to carry out the instructions in your Will. This person will manage your estate and ensure your wishes are honoured.
  • Think about how you want your assets distributed, any specific bequests, and your preference for funeral arrangements or other personal matters.

It is important to work with a solicitor to ensure your Will is legally valid and comprehensive. At Ness Gallagher Solicitors, our experienced team can guide you through the process – we are here to support you in creating a Will that truly represents who you are.