When you're writing a Will online, the most important step - the whole purpose of the document in fact! - is to select a beneficiary who will inherit the property according to your preferences.
In most cases, this will be someone who is a close relative - a family member such as your children, spouse or sibling. In some cases, it may be a friend or a personal contact, and there are opportunities for the beneficiary of a Will to be an organisation or a charity that you want to support with your resources and assets in the event of your death.
Your beneficiary will be looked after according to your wishes if you have a legal Will in place. This makes the entire process easier and removes any concerns or friction points.
How do you choose your beneficiary?
The most important question to ask is, do you have any dependants? Do you have anyone to whom you have or feel a sense of responsibility, even in your death? If you have a child who is a minor, for example, they ought to be taken care of as a matter of priority and should be a beneficiary.
If you do not name your dependant children as beneficiaries, there will be complications, as they will have a claim to your estate. However, in most cases, a parent will be making a Will with the express purpose of ensuring their children are cared and provided for.
Beyond dependants, it becomes a matter of personal preference. There may be people in your life that mean a great deal, that take priority or that you want to continue to support and assist. These are definitely options for beneficiaries as well, whether or not there is a familial relationship.
Friends and Acquaintances
Friends and acquaintances are just as valid as beneficiaries as any family member, and there is no legal difficulty in naming them. It can be a wonderful way to show the value that you place in your friendship.
Organisations or charities
Choosing an organisation as a beneficiary is another option. It essentially means that if you are a dedicated member of a charity or a society and you want to continue to be a part of their work, you can name them to receive a part of your estate. This process is known as leaving a Gift in Will. Suppose you're passionate about conservation and sustainability, for example. In that case, you might name a non-profit organisation that works in that space as a beneficiary so that you can provide them with financial assistance and assets no matter what happens.
That beneficiary option is an excellent way to think about and preserve your legacy, to keep yourself focused on the good that you've managed to achieve and what is important to you next as well. Some of our users who have set up online wills have been excited about taking that step because they can represent and take a stand for their personal values and mission.
Choosing a beneficiary is not easy, but it's a step that allows you to start thinking seriously about the future in a good way. A starting point might be having the conversation in person with the people you're thinking about naming and opening up the topic!
Disclaimer: The content of this blog is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. This blog should not be relied upon as legal, financial, accounting or tax advice.