Anyone who is 18 or over, is or has been married and is of sound disposing mind can make a will. The capacity of persons to make a Will is more particularly set out the Succession Act of 1965.
When should I make a Will
You can make a will at any point during your life. In particular,
if you get married (all previous Wills are automatically revoked when you get married)
if you have children
if your marital status changes for any reason (divorce or separation)
if you own property or inherit property or money
if you are in a long-term relationship but have not married.
Can I change my Will
Yes, you can change your will at any time.
What is an Executor
The executor is the person named in a will who takes care of your estate after you die (i.e. signs papers, instructs the solicitor, arrange for the sale of your house and other property, and so on)
Is making a will expensive
No, a straightforward will is €150-€200 plus vat.
Will my beneficiaries be liable to tax
Gifts and inheritances maybe liable to Capital Acquisitions Tax (CAT) otherwise known as Inheritance Tax. The amount of tax will depend on the relationship between the donor and the beneficiary, the availability of certain tax reliefs, the amount of the inheritance and whether the beneficiary had received any previous gifts or inheritances. Tax above the threshold is currently 33%.
What happens if I die without making a will
If you don’t have a Will, there are rules which govern the way in which your Estate will be divided known as the rules of intestacy. Basically, the division of your Estate will be:
If you are survived by your spouse and children
2/3 to your Spouse and 1/3 to your children
If you are survived by your Spouse only
Spouse will inherit your entire Estate
If you are survived by your children only (not married)
Your Estate is divided equally between your children including children of any predeceased child
If you are survived by none of the above (single but survived by your parents)
Your entire Estate passes to your parent(s)
If you are survived by none of the above
Other rules are applied to determine which of your more distant relatives will inherit your estate.
Under Irish law, there is no distinction made between children born inside or outside of wedlock. Also, adopted children have the same status as natural born children.