2010 - 2017

So Just What Is A Will?

By Stan Taylor Written on:

Want to make a start on your will?

Making a will is simple

Making a Will is not about wealth it is about making sure that what you want to happen to your estate does happen. It gives you the opportunity to specify such things as who will administer your estate, who will care for your children and who will receive specific items of your property.

We have probably all heard of wills and perhaps been involved with the estate of a deceased relative but how many of us know exactly what the term 'will' means?

In fact, a will is the most important document you will ever sign in your lifetime and is the one document about whose contents you cannot be consulted when it really matters, i.e. after your death.

The Definition

The definition used when I was at law school was, 'A will is a declaration with due formality of the dispositions a testator intends to take effect on his death and which is revocable until then.

The Trustee Act 2000 defines a will as 'a document by which a person (called "the testator") appoints executors to administer his estate after his death and directs the manner in which it is to be distributed to the beneficiaries he specifies.'

The legal team

In legal parlance the term for a female who writes a will is 'testatrix'. See https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en/articles/why-you-should-make-a-will

Laws on making your will often change many times in the average person's life. For example A judge has called for a change in the law on deathbed wills after an eight-year legal wrangle over whether a dying man's sibling offered him a steadying hand as he signed all his possessions over to her. See http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/law-and-order/9052035/Judge-calls-for-law-change-over-deathbed-wills.html

Read On? - So What Is A Will? - Do I Need A Will? or So What Is A Will? - Opportunity

Recommended Solicitors

Free Will Sample download

see: Making a will - The Law Society. Please note that will making differs in Scotland and this website currently deals with English laFree Will download


Perhaps you might consider taking legal advice from a solicitor about making a will if any of the following apply to your circumstances:


  1. A number of people could make a claim on your estate when you pass away because they depend on yourself financially
  2. You want to include a trust in your will (perhaps to provide for children, to save tax, or simply protect your assets in some way after you become deceased)
  3. Your physical and permanent home is not in the UK and / or you are not a British citizen
  4. You live here in the UK but you have additional property abroad
  5. You own all or part of a UK business.

see: Making a will - The Law Society. Please note that will making differs in Scotland and this website currently deals with English law.

"Will Making" in the Media