Following the death of musician Prince in April 2016, over a year later, his sister and five half-siblings were declared his legal heirs. The singer did not have a Will and did not have any children.
As many as 45 people have made a claim on the singer's estate, and those who were denied the status as heirs will have time to appeal against the ruling which will prolong the administration of the estate even further.
It has been suggested that the estate is worth in the region of $200m (£153m) and that taxes are likely to be around half of the value of the estate.
Why you should make a Will
This situation highlights the importance of planning for the future. Whilst situations may vary from person to person, some of the main reasons to have a Will are as follows:
You decide how your estate should be distributedAs seen above, there is no guarantee that the beneficiaries of Prince's estate are those that he would've chosen himself had he drafted a Will. A Will lets you decide who you want to inherit your estate, whether they are family, friends or charities.
You decide who should manage your estateIt may put your mind at ease knowing that someone you trust will be in charge of ensuring that all of your affairs are in order. If you have a Will, you choose who should be appointed as your Executor.
Minimise your Inheritance tax liabilityWith good advice your Will can be drafted in order to reduce or even avoid an inheritance tax liability.
Reducing the time/costs involved in winding up your estateNot leaving a Will is likely to mean the administration of your estate will cost more and take longer. As a starting point, in Scotland it's likely that your estate would need to pay for a compulsory insurance policy known as a Bond of Caution. It may also mean time/costs involved in tracing beneficiaries.
Get in touch
A Will is very flexible and can be tailored to your individual wishes. If you would like advice on drafting a Will or inheritance tax planning, please get in touch.
Our offices in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Inverness, Lerwick and Thurso ensure that our experienced and approachable team is on hand to discuss your wishes in a sensitive and efficient manner.