News and views

At Bequeathed, we (naturally) keep an eye on news and developments which are relevant to our services. Whether it is changes in the law or best practice, or stories which show how people go about organising their affairs, these are things we’re interested in. 

In fact, we’re fascinated by them. If it doesn’t sound a bit morbid, we are passionate about wills.

So in this section is a selection of news, news-stories and a few oddments, and our take on them. Some are cautionary tales from the past and the present, and some are clashes between the law and common sense.

You couldn’t make it up

Every will tells a story. In the nature of things, it’s a story which is usually tinged with sadness, but which we hope has a clear outcome, without too many twists and turns along the way. But that’s not always the way. The cases we come across – both in the news and in our historical research – often tell quite a different tale.  Sometimes, those stories are too good not to share, and sometimes the only way to learn the lessons from a story is to tell it.

For example:

  • the story of the magnate and the secret daughter;
  • the ex-husband who only stood to benefit if his ex-wife wasn’t left anything in her mother’s will;
  • a look into Shakespeare’s bedchamber;
  • a disputed ‘deathbed will’ which fractured a family;
  • and lots more.

We need to talk about…

There are plenty of things which are often asked about, and we have our views on those too:

  • the development of digital assets – online profiles, and so on – and the challenge they present when considering your affairs after you’ve gone;
  • what is being done to combat the worrying rise in the rates of intestacy;
  • thoughts about video wills, international wills;
  • ‘forced heirship’ (no – not being made to inherit against your will);

and anything else that comes along.

We lap all this kind of thing up. It keeps us focussed on the fact that wills are all about people, and helps us keep our service fresh and relevant.

Select an article:

Small Charity legacy fundraising

Tips on successful legacy fundraising for small charities

Life after Smee and Ford

Smee & Ford’s arrangement with Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS) is coming to an end.

That immediately begs two questions: what? and why?

Some odd bequests

The expected, the unexpected and the downright baffling

Challenging a will: an interesting state of affairs

To challenge a will you have to have the right amount of interest

Video Wills: times are changing…or are they?

No matter how telegenic you are, you can’t make your will by video

Shakespeare’s will: the Bard and his beds

Why Shakespeare made a gift of his second-best bed in his will

Till death do us part?

The status of the deceased’s partner is not always clear if the relationship is not a marriage or civil partnership

International Wills

A will that is accepted all over the world: what a marvellous idea

The definition of children: child’s play

The definition of ‘children’ must be precise, so that it’s clear who’s included

Reviving a will: That was the will, that was

Making a new will is simpler than reviving an old one

Of affairs: legal, domestic and the other type

Disinheriting family is not as easy as you think

Intestacy: a lesson in anatomy

Intestacy is on the increase: not a good thing

House and home: the main residence nil rate band

You may be able to leave your home to your children or grandchildren tax-free

Forced heirship: home and away

Digital assets: a known unknown?

Advance planning is needed to preserve your digital assets

Death-bed wills: a cautionary tale

A case showing the importance of making a will correctly

A question of capacity

A case from the courts showing that mental illness does not mean lack of testamentary capacity