Protecting your Legacy

The majority of parents will want to be able to leave a legacy for their children and family if they’re able to.

In fact, being able to leave something to families is often one of the primary drivers behind people’s decisions as they head into later life.

According to an article in The Times, nearly 67% of over 60’s will leave assets worth over £100,000 to their children.

When making plans to leave money to children or other family members, it is difficult to foresee all eventualities. The decisions you make may reflect the situation at the time of making a will, therefore not necessarily taking into account future events. One area that often goes overlooked is the possibility of a divorce involving any children set to inherit from your estate. Two thirds of parents over 60 are reported to have no provisions in place for such an eventuality. This is despite the common knowledge that so many marriages end in divorce.

Without accounting for the possibility of divorce in your will, there is a serious risk that a proportion of the assets you leave to your children could end up in the hands of their ex-partner in the event of a separation. This is due to the way that assets are viewed by the law when a couple decide to divorce. Assets that are inherited during the course of a marriage are treated as part of the ‘marital pot’ and therefore subject to be divided up in the financial settlement following divorce.

For further advice in relation to making provisions in your will relating to your children divorcing, or if you are looking for advice more generally on making or amending your will, please contact Rebecca on 01457 761320 or email Rebecca@odonnellsolicitors.co.uk.

Rebecca O’Donnell is Head of Private Client at O’Donnell Solicitors.