There is a key reason it is prudent for parents to create a Will. If you pass away without a valid Will in place and your children are under the age of 18, the decisions about who will take care of them, their education and who will manage their finances is left out of your control.
If you have children under 18 years of age, you can use your Will to appoint Legal Guardians who will look after them should you pass away. This means you have control and peace of mind that their future welfare will be seen to by someone you know and trust.
There are also other elements of Will administration that can be tailored for your children if they are over the age of 18. For example, you can stipulate that they do not receive their inheritance until they are 21 years of age.
It is important to remember that if you pass away without making a Will, and you are leaving behind step-children that you would like to provide for, they will not be legally entitled to any of your estate.
The Rules of Intestacy are there to ensure that the relatives of a deceased person can receive an inheritance if there is no Will in place. However, the list of relatives under these rules do not include step-children.
Therefore, if you wish your step-children to be Beneficiaries of your estate after you pass away, you must create a Will.