Project Description

This case study is for illustrative purposes only and does not constitute advice.
The value of investments can fall as well as rise, you may get back less than you invested.
The FCA do not regulate will writing.

What brought Hayley to us?

Hayley came to see me because she had an investment portfolio which had been arranged for her, but she didn’t really have a clear understanding of her investments. She asked me to go through her portfolio with her and explain what it all meant.

Unfortunately, the circumstances surrounding Hayley’s investments were sad. She had been widowed at the age of 30. Left with two young children, the house and her husband’s very successful business. Alongside all the personal affects and arrangements resulting from his death, Hayley was also had to deal with his business affairs and see that the business was sold.

Hayley is now 34, she has repaid her mortgage on her own home using her husband’s life insurance policy and part of the business sale, the mortgage on a buy-to-let that she and her husband had invested in during his life had also been paid.

With everything looking up, Hayley had a reasonable sum of money left which formed part of her portfolio. After completing a detailed fact find with Hayley, it became clear that the value of her assets, including the main home, was over £700,000. That’s a substantial figure for a young, widowed mum of two!

Asking the right questions

But things were set to get even better for Hayley, who told me that she had met a new partner and they were due to be married within a few weeks of our appointment. As happy as I was that Hayley was looking forward to her new family life, my main priority was to give her the best advice, and that meant asking some very delicate questions…

Her fiancés assets were much lower than her own. Whilst his intentions were honourable, my duty of care in this situation is to Hayley, and her children.

I enquired about any arrangements Hayley might have made and she responded that she had made a will to financially protect the children. However, she did not realise that the will would become invalid when she married her new partner.

Protecting Hayley, her children and her partner

I contacted a local solicitor and explained Hayley’s situation. His concern for her matched my own and he agreed to meet with us to draw up an agreement.

Hayley’s partner will be seeking independent legal advice before signing the agreement and both parties are happy that any financial implications of their marriage have been discussed, aired and organised before ‘the big day’.

The couple are also in the process of drawing up new wills, which will protect each other, the children and their assets both before and after they are wed.