Making a Will to protect children

Mother and child reading

If you die in England or Wales without a valid Will and you have children under 18, others can make decisions about who will take care of the children and manage their finances and education.

From as little as £150 (including VAT) a Will provides peace of mind of knowing the children will be protected and cared for after you pass away.

When we have provided you with a written quote for the agreed work, that price will not change. As part of the Co-op Group, our values of openness, honesty, social responsibility and caring for others are core to the service we provide.

If you have children under 18 years old

Making a Will allows you to name people you and your children trust to look after their well-being if you die. Once these wishes are stated clearly in your Will, you can be sure your children will be properly protected.

Co-op Legal Services can help you every step of the way to write a Will that will name both Guardians and Trustees for your children. Our Will writers make the Will writing process as quick and straightforward as possible, and ensure that all the legal aspects of your wishes are properly covered.

If you have children over 18 years old

If you die without a Will in England or Wales, your estate (your home, car, bank accounts, investments and anything else you own) will be distributed in accordance with the Rules of Intestacy, which govern who will inherit your estate when you are gone.

The Rules of Intestacy state that all children are to receive their inheritance outright at the age of 18, whatever their financial position or their levels of maturity. The Intestacy Rules also state that, if your children are entitled to benefit, then your estate will be divided up equally between all your children (excluding stepchildren) which may not be what you want.

Making a Will can ensure that your grown-up children will get the maximum benefit from their inheritance. It may be that you want them to inherit at age 21 or 25 rather than age 18, or perhaps you’d prefer that they had a share of their inheritance at age 18 and receive the remainder at a later date.

Writing a Will can also ensure that money or other gifts given to your children during your lifetime can be taken into account, helping to minimise disputes between your children after you die.

If you have stepchildren

If you’d like to provide for a stepchild after you pass away, you need to state this clearly in your Will, otherwise they will not inherit any of your finances, property or possessions.

The Rules of Intestacy, which were created back in 1925, don’t reflect the diversity of today’s relationships, in fact they ignore stepchildren entirely.

If you have children from a previous relationship

If you’re in a relationship but not married or in a civil partnership with your partner and you die without a Will, all your property and possessions in your estate will be inherited by your children, meaning your new partner will be left with nothing at all.

However if you’ve married or entered into a civil partnership and you die without a Will, your new spouse or partner will inherit the first £250,000 of your estate outright, which may leave your children with little or no inheritance.

By writing a Will, you can make provision for both your new spouse or partner and your children and avoid potentially unnecessary disputes after your death.

We make writing a will easy

Writing a Will can be quicker and easier that you think when you have a Wills specialist to help you complete the Will writing process from start to finish. At Co-op Legal Services our Will writing advisors will discuss your wishes, offer guidance and can help you to make a Will that’s right for you and your circumstances.

The service I received was first class and extremely painless for what I thought would be a complicated legal procedure. (P.M.)

Check which Will is right for you

Different types of will offer different levels of protection and flexibility. Our interactive tool helps you find the option that best suits your needs.