Glossary

Administrator
The person, normally the next of kin, who handles the financial affairs of the deceased where a Will has not been made.
Asset
Anything of value that you own.
Attestation
The correct confirmation of the Will. The Will includes an Attestation clause that is signed by its owner.
Attorney / Attorneys
The person or people appointed in a Lasting Power of Attorney document to manage someone’s financial (LPA Property & Finance) or welfare (LPA Health & Welfare) issues, when they are still alive but unable to manage by themselves.
Beneficiary / Beneficiaries
The person or people who will receive money or other benefits from a Will.
Bequest
A gift left to a person, organisation or charity in a Will.
Business Trustee(s)
The person(s) controlling a trust containing business assets.
Capital
The value of any assets, rather than any income from them.
Charge
A liability, registered against property, which must be paid off when it is sold or transferred.
Children
Children of any family in which the deceased at any time stood in the role of parent.
Codicil
A legal document altering or adding to an existing will. It must be witnessed in its own right and kept with your will.
Contractual Rights
Rights that can be enforced by law under a contract.
Conveyance
A document or process transferring ownership of land or buildings.
Deed
A legal document that must be witnessed.
Deed of Gift
The transfer of the property, or share of property, from one person to another. Sometimes the husband, wife or one civil partner will own the whole of the property but the owner wants it to be owned as Tenants in Common, one partner gifts a share to the other.
Donor
The owner of the Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA).
Estate
The value of your assets when you die, less any debts or liabilities.
Executor/Executrix (male/female)
The person, people or organisation (such as a solicitor or bank) appointed in a Will to deal with financial affairs of the deceased.
Family Trust
A Trust established during the Clients lifetime designed to prevent any formal administration being necessary upon death. The Trust can also simplify generation skipping or protection measures.
Gift
An asset you give completely to someone else.
Grant of Probate
The Court’s authority for the Executors to deal with the deceased's financial affairs. Issued by the Probate Registry or Sub-Registry.
Guardian
The person or people appointed by the Testator to have parental responsibility for children or dependants if they die.
Home
Your main or only home, often referred to as your principal private residence.
Income
Any money or interest generated by an asset, rather than the value of it.
Intellectual Property
Anything you have created and protected by a patent or copyright, for example.
Intestate/Intestacy
The term given to dying without a Will.
Intestacy (Partial)
Where the deceased leaves a will that fails to distribute the whole estate, or where there is no Executors appointed and able to act.
Intestacy (Rules of)
The rules governing how the estate of an Intestate must to be divided. The rules are fairly complicated.
Irrevocable
A document that cannot be revoked or cancelled.
Joint Tenants
One of the two different ways two or more people can own a single property. When one of the joint owners dies the property will automatically be owned by the surviving joint tenant owner irrespective of what that person’s Will might state. Each owner owns 100% of the property.
Joint Tenants in Common
The second of the two different ways that two or more people can own a single property. Each owner owns an individual share in the property and can leave it to whomever they wish in their Will.
Lasting Power of Attorney (Property & Finance)
A document, separate from a Will, which allows a person to appoint people to manage their financial affairs (called Attorneys) while they are still alive but unable to manage.
Lasting Power of Attorney (Health & Welfare)
It is also possible to have an LPA (Health & Welfare) document drafted, whereby Attorneys are appointed to help manage health and welfare issues when the customer is unable to manage.
Legacy
A gift left to a person or organisation in your will.
Letter of Wishes
Guidance about your wishes, which your trustees do not have to follow.
Liabilities
Debts or bills that must be paid from your estate after you die.
Lifetime Gift
Something you give away while you are alive rather than by your Will.
Literary Estate
All published and unpublished work written by you, and any associated royalties.
Literary Executor
The person who will manage your literary estate.
Mirror Will
A set of two Will documents that are similar in content. Such documents are normally written for couples. Mirror Wills have replaced Joint Wills which were rather inflexible.
Mutual Wills
Mutual Wills cannot be changed after one of you has died.
Occupant
The person(s) allowed to live in a property under a trust arrangement.
Pecuniary legacy
A gift of money in a Will.
Personal Chattels
Tangible moveable property other than money, securities or investments and business assets.
Probate
Legal procedure followed after death to ensure that your Will is valid and which gives the executors power to deal with your estate.
Probate Registry
The legal office (sometimes a sub-registry), like a court, which grants appointed people permission to administer the deceased person’s estate.
Property
Anything owned by a person, not just a building or land.
Residual Beneficiaries
Persons who will benefit from the residual estate.
Residue/Residuary Estate
Whatever remains in your estate after all debts, taxes and gifts have been deducted.
Revoked
A document that has been cancelled, rather that altered.
Schedule
List of assets in a trust or Will.
Settlement
Another word for a trust.
Settlor
The person who sets up a Trust.
Severance of Tenancy
The procedure that enables Joint Tenant owners to convert to Tenants in Common.
Specific Legacy
A gift of specific item such as personal possessions; e.g. jewellery, or land, buildings or investments such as shares.
STEP Provisions
Standard wordings to help executors and trustees do their job.
Survivor
The last person within a defined relationship or group to die.
Tenants in Common
Persons who own a defined (often equal) share of a property.
Testator/Testatrix (male/female)
The owner of a Will.
Trust
An arrangement where property is owned by trustees for someone else's benefit.
Trust Period
How long the trust can exist before it is wound up and distributed. The maximum is 125 years.
Trustees
The person/people or organisation that looks after anything in the Trust before passing the assets to the beneficiaries at the appropriate time.
Will (Last Will and Testament)
Quite simply, a legal document which details a person’s wishes for after they have died.
Will Trust or Trust
A clause written into the Will that acts like a safety deposit box or safe. When the person dies certain assets are passed into the Trust by the Executors.
Witnesses
Two independent people who are required to sign the Will stating that they have observed the Testator signing it. The witnesses must not be benefiting from the Will or be married to (or be in a civil partnership with) anyone benefiting from the Will.

Wills

By making a Will you decide exactly how your estate is distributed and plan for the needs of your individual circumstances. No matter how complicated or simple your Will may be, we will work closely with you, listening carefully to your needs and wishes, providing clear advice based on all of the information you give.

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Estate Planning

Planning your estate can involve many different aspects from basic Wills to Will Trusts and Lifetime Trusts. Modern families can have complicated dynamics and there is often a potential for conflict in the future if relationships break down or after the death of a client. Estate planning can also help to minimise tax liabilities or other expenses after your death.

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Other Services

We can also assist you with the following; setting up a lasting power of attorney, severing a joint tenancy on property, Will storage and related document storage, pre-paid funeral planning and probate. If you have any questions about our services or if you would like arrange a free consultation then please do not hesitate to contact us.

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About Chris Lamb Will Writing Ltd

An independent Will Writing Company based in Chester-Le-Street providing everything from Wills to Lasting Power of Attorney to Pre-Paid Funeral Plans. We cover County Durham, Northumberland, Tyne & Wear and Teesside.

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