With only two days left of National Wills Week, we thought we’d remind you just how important it is to get your will in place, no matter how old you are. Sadly, a large number of South Africans pass without having a will in place, which means that they forfeit the privilege of deciding what should happen to their estate and the estate gets allocated in terms of the pre-determined legislated guidelines known as intestate succession.
What is National Wills Week?
Over the past few years, it has become a national tradition for attorneys across the country to offer the public the chance to have their will drafted by an attorney free of charge. This year’s National Wills Week takes place from 17 to 21 September; it provides the perfect chance for anyone to obtain advice from a professional attorney, ensuring that your will is valid.
Who should have a will?
Whether you’re single, a parent, a spouse, a homeowner, or you just want to ensure that all of your affairs are in order, it is essential that you have a valid will in place. Passing without a will can be devastating and expensive for your loved ones left behind, which is why it is wise to speak with a practising attorney who can help you draft a valid will.
What information do I need to draft my will?
There are a few things you need to bring along when visiting Gunstons to draft your will. These include:
- Your ID document
- A list of assets (including specific personal items that you wish to bequeath to specific people)
We also advise that you consider some important points before coming to your appointment. These include:
- From your list of assets, who should get what?
- If you are a parent of children under the age of 18, who should be the legal guardians if you pass?
- Who should be the executor of your will?
- What funeral arrangements you would like.
There are often more complex considerations to bear in mind when drafting a will, these will be discussed during the appointment with one of our attorneys.
Why should you get your will drafted by a professional?
A practising attorney will ensure that your will is valid by complying with the legal requirements in the Wills Act. So often people do not have the necessary knowledge and expertise when writing their wills, which can be devastating when they pass. Our attorneys will advise and guide you through the entire process, making sure you leave with a valid, up to date will.
If you’ve missed the chance to make it this National Wills Week, then make sure you keep an eye out for next year’s dates!