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Wills and Powers of Attorney

Let’s face it, we are born to die; so let’s go out on our terms!

If you die without a Will, the law decides what happens to everything you value and who gets what. This can cause unnecessary stress, cost, time and money.

A Will allows you to clearly express how you wish your estate (property, possessions and assets) distributed and who you want to benefit from everything you value most, when you die.

Don’t leave a mess behind, do the right thing and get the right lawyer, right now!

Have you heard of the Power of Attorney?

Anything can happen at any point in your life from illness to unexpected accidents. Use this opportunity to get all your legal affairs organised by the right person!

You never know the moment.

Why do I need a Will?

Making a Will is one of the single most important steps you can take to protect your family’s interests and secure their future when you die.

A Will makes everything more personal, more straightforward and less distressing, giving you and those you love the peace of mind for the future. It is also of great benefit to those dealing with your estate, as intestacy (dying without a Will) can be an expensive, costly, challenging and lengthy process for everyone involved.

We Can Help!

We know you’ll have lots of questions throughout this process. We’re here to answer these and many more.

You should update your Will every time there is a significant change to your personal circumstances. E.g. the birth of a child, divorce, when you move house, when you move in with a new partner, when you have grandchildren or if there is a change to the people you wish to appoint as a guardian, executor or beneficiary.

We recommend you review your Will every three to five years. We also advise speaking to a solicitor if you or your family’s circumstances change. Events such as marriage, civil partnership, separation, divorce births or a death can have the effect of invalidating your Will, and expert advice is advisable at the earliest opportunity.

Have confidence in us to help you get all your legal affairs organised for the future.

Make an enquiry! Call: 0800 11 12 13

Dying without a Will (intestate) in Scotland means your estate is dealt with in accordance with the law of intestacy, which can be very impersonal. It does not take into account the specifics of your own family dynamic or relationships. Not only can this be painful for your loved ones, but it also involves additional costs and administration, which could be easily avoided by putting a simple Will in place.

Hundreds of people in Scotland pass away each year without a valid Will to protect their wishes. When you die without a valid Will, your estate will be distributed according to the rules of ‘intestate succession’. Your spouse or civil partner will have certain rights, but they will not automatically receive your entire estate. The rules may dictate that other family members, often unexpectedly, will inherit. This could create more stress and upset during an already difficult time, so protect the people and possessions that matter most to you.

Speak to a specialist now.

Make an enquiry! Call: 0800 11 12 13

A Power of allows you to grant the people you trust ‘power’ to make important decisions for you, if for whatever reason you are unable to do so for yourself in the future. Incapacity can happen to any of us, at any time, unexpectedly through illness (such as dementia) or as a result of an accident.

No one, not even your next of kin, has an automatic right to make those decisions on your behalf without the appropriate legal authority.

Our highly experienced Power of Attorney Solicitors are here to help you get your legal affairs in order for the future, whilst you are still in control.

Speak to a specialist now.

Make an enquiry! Call: 0800 11 12 13

There are two kinds of power of attorney which will help if you become mentally incapacitated:

  • Continuing (financial) Power of Attorney – someone to look after your money and property
  • Welfare Power of Attorney – someone to decide about your personal welfare, such as medical and care decisions.

You can make one Power of Attorney covering both welfare and money matters or two Powers, appointing different people. You can appoint joint Attorneys or choose someone as a substitute Attorney in case your first choice can’t carry on.

A Power of Attorney must then be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian in Scotland. Our Powers of Attorney Lawyers will take care of all requirements on your behalf as part of our bespoke service, keeping you well informed and fully involved
throughout the process.

We know that every client, every family and every circumstance is unique. Our experienced and understanding Powers of Attorney solicitors will tailor your legal advice to best suit your needs.

Don’t wait until it is too late. Life is for living and incapacity can happen at any time, from car accidents, extreme sports, sudden illness, the list goes on. A Power of Attorney will protect your interests. Where there is no Power of Attorney in place, a loved one will have to go through an often lengthy court process to apply for guardianship.

Make an enquiry! Call: 0800 11 12 13

A Living Will – also known as an Advance Directive, is a document which allows you to set out your instructions on medical treatment and used when you can’t communicate at the time treatment is needed.

Essentially, if you do not want to be given certain medical treatment or undergo medical procedures at any point in your lifetime, an Advance Directive ensures your decisions are taken into account at the time the medical treatments are to take place.

An Advance Directive can allow you to refuse any medical treatment including life-sustaining treatment, such as: CPR; ventilator equipment; medication or artificial hydration.

If you think an Advanced Directive may be relevant to your circumstances, we advise.

It is a Doctor’s duty to act in your best interests and do all that they can to keep you alive (including invasive surgery or treatment) unless an Advance Directive has been made and states otherwise.

An Advance Directive can help provide reassurance for those tasked with making those decisions on your behalf, be it family members, attorneys, guardians at what can be a stressful time that they are following your wishes. It can also assist where there may be potential conflict to explicitly state your wishes ahead of time.

The Law in Scotland states that an Advance Directive can be made if you have the capacity to do so and the treatments refused are relevant to your current medical situation at the time the document is made.

Make an enquiry! Call: 0800 11 12 13

When a loved one dies, the task of dealing with the estate can be an emotional and distressing prospect at an already sensitive time. If the deceased has died without a Will, the situation may be even more complicated.

If you find yourself in this situation, give us a call to see how we can help. Our lawyers are sensitively trained and on hand to offer guidance and advice and can take care of everything required, leaving you to rebuild your life.

Because our lawyers have helped families and communities in Scotland for many years, we are experienced in dealing with any size of estate from multi-portfolio, high-value estates which may have complex issues to deal with, as well as handling many straightforward estates where few assets or property is involved.

Speak to a specialist now.

Talk to a specialist now Call: 0800 11 12 13

Winding up someone’s affairs after they die is a big task. It serious responsibility with legal obligations, tax implications, and court applications. That’s why we’re here to help.

We ingather the estate, taking care of paperwork, paying debts, confirming assets and distributing in accordance with the law and Will. There are lots to do which is why we keep you informed through the entire process.

The executor starts work as soon as the someone dies. They have to tell friends and family, register the death and checking the Will for funeral wishes. Always check with the deceased’s lawyer for an up to date version of the Will and give a copy of the death certificate along with the funeral director’s invoice to the deceased’s bank for payment from their account. If any expenses are incurred – keep receipts for a refund from the Estate.

Make an enquiry! Call: 0800 11 12 13

It’s critical to find the most up-to-date version of the deceased’s Will. If there is no Will (known as ‘intestacy’) then an application should be made to the local Sheriff Court to appoint an executor. A grant of Confirmation is then required giving the executor the legal rights to deal with the property owned by the deceased. Confirmation permits the executor to ingather the assets of the estate. Debts and taxes should all be paid first. The executor should wait six months before distributing the estate just on case any claims from creditors can be made. When six months from the date of death have passed, the estate can then be distributed according to the Will subject to any payment for prior rights (a spouse or civil partner’s legal right to a share of the estate) or legal rights (which is a spouse, civil partner or children’s rights to a share of the estate, with the exception of any real estate property.)

There is useful information on the legal process and duties of an executor from the Scottish Courts service.

When you read it over, you will see why generations trust Ross Harper to deal with the death of their loved ones. Trust us to find the right lawyer to take care of the legal paperwork and allowing you to grieve and move on.

Make an enquiry! Call: 0800 11 12 13