Many of us are reluctant to think about writing a will. But with expert support from RCNLaw, the process may be more straightforward than you imagine
Having a will makes things much easier for your family and friends when you die. Without a will, all you own will be shared out in a way defined by law – and that may not be what you wanted.
You don’t need to own property before you write a will. If you have assets of £5,000 or more, probate – the legal and financial processes for dealing with what you owned – is required.
A will can also help reduce the amount of inheritance tax that will have to be paid on your estate.
You should consider creating a will if you have a family, savings, insurance policies or personal belongings. But there are other key milestones in life when you should think seriously about a will – for example, getting married, buying a house, having a child or nearing retirement.
If you’re not married but cohabiting, remember that if you don’t have a will, your partner may not be legally entitled to anything if you die, meaning your assets may go directly to your nearest relative.
There are standard ways of writing wills designed to ensure there’s no confusion about what you intended. And although a DIY will may seem a cheap option, if you do get it wrong, your family and friends could have difficulty meeting your wishes after you’ve gone.
For RCN members, a single will provided by RCNLaw starts at £80 plus VAT, with costs determined by the size of your estate and the complexity of the documents relating to it. A joint will costs from £100 plus VAT. The fee you pay is fixed, so there are no unexpected legal bills.
Everything you need. The RCNLaw will-writing service begins with a telephone conversation with one of our legal experts. You’ll be given detailed advice to ensure the will meets your needs. We’ll write the will for you, and give you written advice and instructions. We’ll also store your will securely free of charge.
You should certainly review your will from time to time and there are some circumstances where you should consider making changes or writing a new will – if someone named in your will dies, for example, or you get divorced. Writing a new will is usually the best option if you want to make anything other than very small changes – but we can advise.
On the legal support pages of the RCN website.
Remember also that as an RCN member, you're entitled to free help and advice on a wide range of other topics, including personal injury claims and referrals to the Nursing and Midwifery Council. We can give legal advice on non-work matters as well.
Either visit the webpages or telephone on 0345 772 6100 between 8.30am and 8.30pm, seven days a week.