Wills and inheritance: how the new intestacy rules affect you
An overhaul of laws governing what happens to someone's money when they die without making a will come into force on 1st October 2014. The changes mainly affect 'common law' partners and children of married partners.
What are the main changes to the intestacy rules?
The new intestacy rule changes will not affect estates of less than £250,000 in total assets
Unmarried partners with no children
- despite pressure to make changes, unmarried partners still have no automatic right to receive benefit from a deceased partners estate
- the only way a partner can receive the proceeds if a partner dies intestate is to get married or make a will
Unmarried partners with children
- unmarried partners have no automatic right to benefit
- estate will be distributed amongst blood relatives with children first in line
Married/civil partnership person with no children
- under old rules when a married person with no children died then their spouse would receive the first £450,000 of the estate plus 50% of any amount above this figure and any balance would be split amongst blood relatives
- under the new intestacy rules the remaining spouse will get the whole proceeds from the estate
Married/civil partnership person with children
- under the new intestacy rules the surviving partner will be allowed all of the first £250,000 of the estate as well as 50% of everything above this amount. Previously they were entitled to all of the first £250,000 but were only allowed to draw income from 50% of the estate above £250,000.
- any children will be entitled to 50% of anything above £250,000.
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