If you are unmarried with children and have not made a Will, on your death your Estate passes to your children under the Intestacy Rules. But have you considered who would act as your personal representative and administer your Estate if your children are too young to do so?
The Non-Contentious Probate Rules provide that when an unmarried person with minor children dies without Will, the surviving parent of the child or children should be appointed to administer the Estate.
In some cases, this could result in significant distress for other family members, for instance if the deceased parent and the surviving parent of the child were no longer in a relationship. By leaving minor children and no Will, you could open the door for an ex-partner to enter your home, deal with your bank accounts and handle your photographs, jewellery and other personal belongings.
If a family member such as your parent wanted to keep an item of sentimental value to remember you by, your ex-partner as administrator of the Estate could refuse to allow that to happen. There is also a risk that your ex-partner could issue court proceedings against other family members to recover any assets or items belonging to you which they might hold.
Making a Will does not only set out who should receive legacies from your Estate but provides the ability to appoint a trusted person to ensure that your Estate is administered as per your wishes. You should give careful consideration to the appointment of an appropriate Executor to minimise the risk of disputes after your death, particularly if you have children.
If you are concerned about an Estate involving legacies due to minor children which may not be being administered appropriately, you should seek legal advice from a specialist solicitor.
"By leaving minor children and no Will, you could open the door for an ex-partner to enter your home, deal with your bank accounts and handle your photographs, jewellery and other personal belongings."