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Access to and use of this site is provided by Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice subject to the following Terms and Conditions:

1. Your use of this site constitutes acceptance of these Terms and Conditions, which take effect on the date of your first use of the site.

2. Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice reserves the right to change the Terms and Conditions at any time by posting changes online. Your continued use of the site after changes are posted constitutes acceptance of this agreement as modified by the posted changes.

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4.1 Any organisation wishing to set up a link to this site must request this by contacting info@birminghamhospice.org.uk

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7. You agree to use this site only for lawful purposes, and in a manner which does not infringe the rights of, or restrict, or inhibit the use and enjoyment of this site by any third party. Such restriction and inhibition includes, without limitation, conduct which is unlawful or which may harass or cause distress or inconvenience to any person and the transmission of obscene or offensive material or disruption of normal flow of dialogue within this site.

8. This site and the information, names, images, photographs, logos and icons regarding or relating to Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice, its products and services (or to third party products and services) is provided ‘AS IS’ and on an ‘IS AVAILABLE’ basis without any representation or endorsement made and without warranty of any kind whether expressed or implied, including but not limited to the implied warranties of satisfactory quality, fitness for a particular purpose, non-infringement, compatibility, security and accuracy.

9. Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice does not accept liability for any damages, including, without limitation, indirect or consequential damages, or loss of profits, or any damages whatsoever arising out of or in connection with the use or loss of use of this site.

10. Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice does not warrant that the functions contained in the material included in this site will be uninterrupted or error-free, that defects will be corrected, or that this site or the server that makes it available are free of viruses or bugs or represents the full functionality, accuracy or reliability of the materials.

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Users contacting this website and/or its owners do so at their own discretion and provide any such personal details requested at their own risk. Your personal information is kept private and stored securely until a time it is no longer required or has no use, as detailed in the Data Protection Act 1998. Every effort has been made to ensure a safe and secure form to email submission process but we advise users using such form to email processes that they do so at their own risk.

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Information we may collect from you

Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice may collect and process the following data about you:

• information that you provide by filling in forms on the website www.birminghamhospice.org.uk This includes information provided at the time of signing up to participate in Fundraising and other events organised by Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice, becoming a member of the website and subscribing to any of Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice’s electronic or paper marketing and news updates.
Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice may also ask you for information if you report a problem with the website:
• any correspondence you send to Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice;
• details of any donations or job applications that you make;
• Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice may also ask you to complete surveys used for research purposes, although you do not have to respond to them;
• details of your visits to this website and the resources that you access;
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Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice may collect information about your computer, including where available your IP address, operating system and browser type, for system administration and to report aggregate information to our advertisers. This is statistical data about Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice’s users’ browsing actions and patterns, and does not identify any individual.

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Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice website uses cookies for collecting user information; it does not collect any information about you except that required for system administration of the web site. These cookies are pieces of data created when you visit a site, and contain a unique, anonymous number. They are stored in the cookie directory of your hard drive, and do not expire at the end of your session.

We use cookies (defined below) for collecting user information from the site:

A cookie is a message given to a web browser by a web server. The message is then stored by the browser in a text file called cookie.txt. Each time the browser requests a page from the server, this message is sent back. A cookie’s main objective is to identify users and personalise their visit by customising web pages for them, for example by welcoming them by name next time they visit the same site. A site using cookies will usually invite you to provide personal information such as your name, e-mail address and interests.

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17.1 You agree that any costs or risks that arise out of your fundraising activities are your responsibility, including liabilities for injury or loss which may occur to you, your helpers or guests.

17.2 You are aware that Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice’s insurance policy will not cover your fundraising activities.

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17.4 You agree to pay all proceeds of any fundraising event to Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice within an agreed timescale and will not deduct any costs unless agreed in writing with Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice.

17.5 You agree to only use Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice branded materials and the Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice name and logo for your  fundraising activities that have been approved by Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice. You agree to use these in accordance with the Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice brand guidelines.

17.6 You consent that photographs taken during your fundraising activity may be used to publicise the work of Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice generally.

We would like to keep in touch with you about our vital work and update you on our news and fundraising activities. Please tell us if you would be happy for us to contact you:

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After the success of our Make A Will webinars, we wanted to share some of the brilliant questions asked by our community in relation to creating and adjusting a Will. We hope that these questions will help to guide and reassure you during the process of creating a will; if you would like to find out more about creating a will and supporting the Hospice please feel free to reach out directly.

The answers to these questions have very kindly been checked by our corporate partner, FBC Manby-Bowdler who are supporting us through our Bequeathed online will-writing service which allows you to create your own basic will in the comfort of your own home. For more information about this click here

Can I make a joint Will with my spouse/civil partner/cohabiting partner?

Each person has to make their own individual Will. Spouses/civil partners/cohabiting partners are able to make Wills at the same time but each individual will need to sign their own Will.

Spouses/civil partners/cohabiting couples can make mirrored Wills.  This is the most common form of Will for more than one person. These are virtually identical Wills that contain the same wishes.  For example, on first death, the estate will pass to the survivor and on second death, the estate will pass to the children in equal shares.

Sometimes, it is important to spouses/civil partners/partners that after the first one dies, the survivor cannot change their Will if they go on to marry someone else or form another relationship.  Mutual Wills can be made in this instance.  Up until the point that the first person dies, the Wills can be changed.  However, after the first one dies, the survivor’s Will cannot be changed.  Mutual Wills are inadvisable and rarely drafted these days.  Much the same can be achieved through the use of Trusts in a Will and they give greater flexibility.

Whilst there are Mirror Wills and Mutual Wills, there is no law that says that spouses/civil partners/cohabiting couples need to make the same Wills.  Each person has their own testamentary freedom to put whatever wishes they have into their own Will.

Can I change my Will at any time?

Yes. Your Will should be regularly reviewed every 5 years and if you have a change of circumstances such as a beneficiary dying, it is vitally important that you review your Will with your solicitor to ensure your Will is still fit for purpose and carries out your wishes.

However, as outlined above, if you have made a Mutual Will and your spouse/civil partner/cohabiting partner has died, then you will be unable to change your Will.

If you get married, you will need to make a new Will as unless there is a special ‘contemplation of marriage clause’ in your Will, your Will is revoked and the wishes contained in your Will cannot be carried out.

Other examples of a change of circumstances that may prompt you to change your Will are: –

  1. If you have had another child;
  2. If you now have grandchildren;
  3. If you have inherited some money or property from another person’s estate;
  4. If your financial circumstances have changed;
  5. If you have recently connected with a charity and wish to remember them in your Will

Where is my Will stored? Do I keep it or does my Solicitor? I’m worried about losing it!

It is advisable that you keep your original Will in a safe place; preferably somewhere outside your home.  If you made a Will with a firm of solicitors, they will store it safely and securely.  You should tell the Executors of the Will where the original Will is so that they can deal with matters swiftly when you die.

If your Will is held together by a binder or ribbon that is damaged or if the printed Will becomes creased or marked this can cause problems when it comes to proving your Will as part of applying for a Grant of Probate and further evidence as to the plight and condition of the Will may be required to obtain the Grant of Probate.

The Probate Registry can be particularly strict with this as they want to ensure that the Will is valid and it is in the same condition as when you signed it, so if there are any staple marks, stains, creases or rips this can cause issues that your Executors will need to address.

You do not have to store your Will with a solicitor, you can keep it yourself if you feel like it is safe at home, and it could be stored in a lockbox or safe. However, if you do not have a secure location for your Will in your home, there is the possibility that the Will could get damaged or even destroyed in some cases (for example, if there is a fire).

When a firm of solicitors hold the original Will in safe storage, once they are notified of your death by your Executors, have been provided with a Death Certificate and have the requisite identification documents from your Executors, then they can release the original Will.

What happens if the Solicitor storing my Will goes out of business?

Unfortunately, solicitors’ firms do close.  This could be for a variety of reasons ranging from the owners retiring to the firm being forcibly shut down by the Regulation Authority.   Sometimes, firms merge with other firms or are taken over by other firms.

You should be notified if there is a merger or takeover to let you know where your Will is stored and given the option to keep it there or move it to somewhere else.

If a firm has been closed by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, another firm of solicitors is appointed to deal with the closure and again, you will be notified as to where your Will is and to take instructions as to what you want to do with it.

If you have any doubts as to the location of your Will following the closure of a firm of solicitors, you should contact the Solicitors Regulation Authority and they will check their records.

Many law firms are registered with a company called Certainty The National Will Register. If the firm where your Will is stored is registered with Certainty The National Will Register and it goes out of business or, if you have any doubt whether you have made a Will, this company will conduct a search using the testator’s name (the name of the person) and the result will be able to show the name of the firm where the Will is stored, if you have one, and will provide you with the firm’s contact details.

It is advised if you have made a Will that you tell your executors where that Will is stored, and that you also keep a copy of your Will in a safe place. Then, if your Will is lost, there is a copy available which can, in exceptional circumstances, be used by your Executors to make the application to obtain a Grant of Probate.  It is advisable that if you cannot find your original Will or you do not know its location that you simply make a new Will.

Can I use a Will to protect against care fees?

Yes, it possible to do some care planning with your Will. This is a conversation that is best had with your solicitor who can advise you as to all of the options available to you.

Are there any tax benefits for leaving a gift to charity in my Will?

Yes. Inheritance Tax is a tax that is applied to your estate when you die and is paid to the HM Revenue & Customs. Your Executors must pay Inheritance Tax if the value of your estate exceeds the nil rate band which is currently £325,000.00.  There is an additional nil rate band called the Residence Nil Rate Band which is currently £175,000.00 and is available if you own a property and are passing your property to direct descendants (i.e. children and grandchildren).  If you are in a married couple or a civil partnership, you also benefit from the transferable nil rate band so any unused nil rate bands from the first person to die can be transferred to the estate of the survivor which means that potentially £1 million could be available free of Inheritance Tax. Inheritance Tax is 40% of the value of your estate which exceeds the available nil rate bands .

Any gift that you leave to charity in a Will is free of Inheritance Tax.  The other advantage is that if your estate is taxable, if you decide you wish to leave a gift to a charity in your Will, as long as this gift is a minimum of 10% of the value of your estate, the rate of Inheritance Tax is reduced to 36% in recognition of your charitable donation.

When assessing whether your estate is likely to be taxable, it is worth calculating what your estate is worth now to include your savings, property, shares or investments to name a few.

A gift to charity does not need to be for Inheritance Tax savings purposes, it can simply be to remember a charity you support and to continue to help them financially after you have died.

Can my funeral wishes be changed by a family member – or will they definitely be adhered to?

Funeral wishes can be included in your Will, whether that be dress codes, hymns or family traditions. These wishes will be used as a guide by your family to help take away the emotional distress of planning a funeral during the bereavement.  The wishes are not legally binding.

These wishes will be adhered to as best as possible, but there may be extenuating circumstances that mean that some wishes are not able to go ahead. For example, if you included as a funeral wish that you wanted to be buried in a specific cemetery, but there was no space left, an alternative would be arranged.

So funeral wishes will be adhered to where possible, but may be adjusted when certain wishes are not possible.

To download our Frequently Asked Questions, click here.

 

We hope that these questions will help and guide you through your process of making a Will – if you would like to watch our Make A Will webinars and hear in more depth about the process of making a Will please click here to head over to our Facebook page!

If you would like to discuss making a Will or have any questions please contact our Fundraising Team on 0121 752 8779 or via email at fundraise@birminghamhospice.org.uk where we can answer any questions you may have or signpost you to FBC Manby-Bowdler. 

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