Make A Will Month – April 2015 #futureplanning #family #charity

Published on: 10/03/2015

wirral_hospice_extension_square_july_2014Making a legally valid will is one of the most important things you can do to ensure that your loved ones are provided for when you are no longer around to look out for them.

Many people do not want to consider making a will yet or think that they will get to it another time, or they may even be worried about the cost of it.

Unfortunately in this country, if your wishes are not drawn up officially then legally your assets are at the mercy of the government, which could leave behind big problems for your loved ones that could take many years to sort out.

If you have assets of any kind and loved ones you would like to look after, it’s crucial that you have a will. The law does not recognise unmarried couples either so if one of you dies suddenly without a will, your partner could be left without anything.

Wills are legally-binding documents and although you can make wills online cheaply and even for free, it is advisable to get professional support because even small errors could cause big problems for the future.

It can usually cost in the region of £150+ for a single will and £250+ for a double will. More complex estates, for example those involving several properties, savings accounts or business assets can take much longer to work on and are understandably more expensive.

Wirral Hospice St John’s has formed partnerships with a number of local solicitors who are all willing to draw up wills at their own expense throughout April.

However, the solicitors are requesting that individuals make a fair donation to the Hospice in return for this service, which is a suggested minimum donation of £80 for a single will and £150 for a double will.

Appointments need to be booked in advance with each of the participating solicitors. Slots will fill up very quickly; early booking is advised so as not to be disappointed!

Please contact one of the solicitors below, stating that you wish to participate in Wirral Hospice’s Make A Will Month:

  •  David Roberts & Co, Ms Marie Granby, 96-98 Victoria Road, New Brighton CH45 2JF Tel: 0151 639 9595
  • Halsalls, Ms Victoria Moody-Smith, 17 Brandon Street, Birkenhead CH41 5HN Tel: 0151 647 6323
  • Haworth & Gallagher, Ms Cath Kehoe, 37/39 Wallasey Road, Wallasey CH45 4NN Tel: 051 638 5457
  • Hillyer McKeown, Ms Wendy Randall, 1 Hamilton Square, Birkenhead CH41 6AU Tel: 0151 647 6000
  • Kirwans, Mr John-Paul Dennis and Mr Jasper Dawson, 363 Woodchurch Road, Prenton CH42 8PE Tel: 0151 608 9078
  • Kirwans, Ms Claire Currie, 236-238 Hoylake Road, Moreton CH46 6AD Tel: 0151 677 3433
  • Lees Solicitors, Ms Jannina Barker, 44/45 Hamilton Square, Birkenhead CH41 5AR Tel: 0151 647 9381
  • Lees Solicitors, Ms Maxine Phillips, 90/92 Telegraph Road, Heswall CH60 0AQ Tel: 0151 342 6273
  • Lees Solicitors, Ms Maxine Philips, 52a Grange Road, West Kirby CH48 4EF Tel: 0151 625 9364
  • Wilde & Co, Mr Stephen Wilde, 6 Bridge Street, Neston CH64 9UJ Tel: 0151 353 1899

Wirral Hospice St John’s provides specialist palliative care and support to patients, their carers and families across Wirral. Its commitment is to improve the quality of life for patients.

The Hospice can see and support around 200 patients a month through its outpatients and day therapy unit. It has a modern and welcoming inpatient ward that can accommodate up to 16 patients at a time.

Additionally, a Hospice at Home service ensures that patients who would like to be in their own homes can receive the care and support they need if it is possible for them to go home.

The Hospice operates 24hrs a day, all year round and care is free to our patients.

It costs more than £3million a year to run the Hospice, which is approx £8,000 a day. We receive some NHS grants towards patient care but the majority of our income is from voluntary donations we receive from our wonderful supporters.

This includes gifts people leave to us in their wills, examples of which can be anything from a silver ring; a £100 donation; 10% of an estate shared with several named charities; to a gift of £50,000. It really varies what people have left us in their wills and we are always so grateful for whatever people choose to donate to us to help us to continue with our special care.

Legacies are an important part of our fundraising and ensure that we will be here to care for our patients and families at their time of need.

Please note that if you use one of the firms of solicitors supporting Wirral Hospice St John’s Make A Will Month there is absolutely no obligation at all to leave a gift in your will to the Hospice in addition to making a donation towards the cost of the will-writing service.

If you choose to do so though, it is at your discretion and the solicitor is not allowed to inform the Hospice or any other charity you might wish to support after your lifetime.

If you do wish to leave a charitable bequest, no matter how small you may think it is, it can make a big difference to the charity or charities concerned.

There are different gifts you can leave in your will:

  • Residual legacy: This is a gift of the remainder (or share of) your estate, after all other gifts are made to loved ones and any debts cleared.
  • Pecuniary legacy: This is a gift of a fixed sum of money.
  • Specific legacy: This is a gift of a particular named item, i.e. jewellery or a painting.

Properly drawn up wills can reduce Inheritance Tax and leaving a gift to a charity can lower the overall tax payable on your estate.

Of course, you may already have a will in place but if major changes have happened in your life, such as marriage, having children, divorce, death of a loved one, then it can make aspects or all of a current will invalid.

The Hospice’s Make A Will Month is a good opportunity to take stock of your situation and possessions and make some firm plans for the future.

Please do not delay something as important as this; pick up the phone, make that appointment and know that you will be making a donation to your local Hospice in doing so.

Visit Wirral Hospice’s website to find out more. Registered Charity No. 510643

Author: Teresa Nightingale