Writing a will needs an expert.

  hastelloy 09:48 21 Mar 2018

I just replied to the LPA thread and thought a separate thread on wills would be better.

It is very easy when trying to write a will to put something which is very clear to you but ambiguous to others. Take this example: "I leave my estate to be divided equally between Mr A, Mrs B, Miss C and Mr and Mrs D.

How many beneficiaries are there?

  lotvic 10:22 21 Mar 2018


  lotvic 10:28 21 Mar 2018

I meant estate divided into 4 shares between 5 people. Mr and Mrs D get half of one quarter each. That makes 5 beneficiaries.

  Quickbeam 17:21 21 Mar 2018

Is there a prize?

  Quickbeam 17:24 21 Mar 2018

I think a solicitor would specifically specify a 1/4 to each with Mr & Mrs being one 1/4. I think if it was between 5 it should say Mr D & Mrs D.

But don't write your will on my advice!

  bumpkin 21:06 21 Mar 2018

hastelloy, I intend to make mine soon. I would only have it done by a solictor for the very reasons that you have pointed out. Are they still required to be handwritten?

  wee eddie 23:34 21 Mar 2018

bumpkin: a quill will do, the pricked finger is no longer necessary

  hastelloy 14:41 22 Mar 2018

lotvic & Quickbeam

That is the way we did it although there is room for argument.


A solicitor will have it typed out for you to sign.

I think in October (may be November) many solicitors wave their fee in return for a donation to charity.

  wee eddie 17:35 22 Mar 2018

If your Will is for less than £10,000. Then it's no big deal.

If you own property, your home, and have other assets, then I would strongly advise involving a Solicitor

  Forum Editor 17:48 22 Mar 2018

Mr and Mrs D are not a single legal entity - they are two individuals. The way you have worded things means that they would both be entitled to a fifth share, as would the other beneficiaries.

If you don't want that to happen, you should amend the wording to stipulate that Mr A, Mrs B, Miss C each get one quarter of your disposable estate, with the remainder divided equally between Mr. and Mrs. D.

It also helps to include at this stage a provision for what happens if one or more of these people pre-deceases you. Then you can relax.

  hastelloy 18:12 22 Mar 2018


My intention was to point out how easy it is to be ambiguous and I think I achieved that.

My wife and I were the executors of this particular will and, unfortunately also Mr & Mrs D. After discussion with the other beneficiaries we decided to avoid possible legal action by settling on 4 equal shares rather than 5. The amount involved wasn't (in our estimation) sufficient to cause conflict.

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