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10 Wills and Probate

1. Introduction

When a person dies, someone has to deal with their affairs and decide what will happen to the things they owned.

This leaflet explains what the law says about how this should happen.

 

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There is information on:

2. Why should I make a will?

3. What makes a will valid?

4. Who can be a witness?

5. What does an executor or administrator do?

6. What is probate?

7. Will I have to pay inheritance tax?

8. Who takes charge if there is no will?

9. Who gets the estate if there is no will?

10. What can I do if I think there is something wrong with the will?

11. What can I do if I think the will is unfair?

12. What if there isn't enough money to pay for the funeral?

13. What if there isn't enough money to pay the person's debts?

14. Terms used in wills and probate matters

15. Further help

16. About this leaflet



Dealing with someone's affairs when they die is often distressing. But it can also seem difficult and confusing. This can be made worse by unusual words and expressions that are used to describe who does what and the procedures when someone dies. See 'Terms used in wills and probate matters' for an explanation of many of these words.





This leaflet is published by the Legal Services Commission (LSC). It was written in association with Paul Elmhirst, a solicitor specialising in wills and probate.

Leaflet version: July 2007




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