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Deed of Variation

Are you aware that your inherited wealth may be at risk?
You can protect your wealth by varying the way assets are distributed in a Will with a Deed of Variation.

What is a Deed of Variation?
A Deed of Variation changes a Will after death and enables the Beneficiaries of a Deceased’s estate to alter the distribution of that estate, or relinquish a bequest from an estate, by changing the Deceased’s Will. This term is also known as an Instrument of Variation, a Family Arrangement, a Deed of Surrender, or a Deed of Assignment.

When can you use a Deed of Variation?
A Deed of Variation may be drafted up to two years after the date of death.

Why use a Deed of Variation?
It may be desirable to amend the Will of a Deceased, or an Intestacy, for many reasons. The main reason for using a Deed of Variation is to make sure that the assets passed to a Beneficiary are protected from threats, such as:

Marriage After Death
All the assets are solely owned by the surviving spouse/partner on first death. If the surviving spouse/partner remarries, then the inherited estate could be lost to the new spouse thus disinheriting your children.

Divorce Settlements
Half of what you intended them to receive is at risk to Divorce Settlements if your children/chosen Beneficiaries are subject to Divorce proceedings.

Creditors and Bankruptcy
If any of your Beneficiaries are subject to Creditor Claims or Bankruptcy, then the inherited estate is fully at risk.

Long Term Care Fees
If the Inheritance has been passed to your chosen Beneficiaries, then these assets could later be assessed for their own Care Costs.

Generational IHT
Assets inherited from a Will directly will add to the Beneficiary’s estates and impact on their own Inheritance Tax.

Why vary your inheritance to a Trust?
By not receiving your inheritance and varying the assets into a Trust, this will ensure that the assets are protected for generations to come and protected against risks such as:

  • Divorce Settlements
  • Long Term Care Fees
  • Marriage After Death
  • Creditors & Bankruptcy
  • Further Taxation

Assets held within a Trust will ensure your inheritance is protected whilst still allowing you full access to the assets to use as you wish.

How does a Deed of Variation work?
Under a Will or an Intestate estate, each adult Beneficiary has only the authority to vary his own share of the estate. As long as the person wishing to vary has an interest in that property, it can apply to any property comprised in a Deceased’s estate. For children, the situation becomes more complicated as they cannot consent to changes themselves – therefore an application must be made to the Courts for consent to be obtained on their behalf.
For more information on a Deed of Variation and how it could benefit you, call our team of experts at Will Protect on 0845 8948 441.