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Actor who dies without a Will leaves £3m

A much-loved actor, who was known to many as Basil Brush’s sidekick before playing the part of Bernard Woolley in the popular sit-com, Yes Minister has died without making a Will, it has been recently announced.

Derek Fowlds, who was a well-known face on TV for much of his life passed away just over a year ago, but unusually he died without making a will, despite having a less than straightforward private life.

Mr Fowlds, who was 82, had suffered with ill health through pneumonia and sepsis, which claimed his life at the beginning of 2020, but no Will was located, despite his sizeable wealth.

It means that his two sons from his first marriage look likely to inherit his estate. He had been married twice, including for a brief spell to former Blue Peter presenter Lesley Judd, but additionally had lived much of his adult life with a partner who passed away in 2012.

This in many ways is a shade peculiar as for someone to accumulate such wealth without leaving a Will is not the norm.

The term dying intestate means to die without a Will, and this happens many thousands of times each year, often leading to legal battles.

Of course, Mr Fowlds may have realised that under the law his life’s estate would pass to his sons, and been perfectly happy with this, but sadly, in an era of complex family circumstances many die without thinking through the ramifications and causing huge issues for those left behind.

We advise everyone that a Will is one of the most important documents an individual can ever invest in. It sets out clearly what is to be done with belongings, as well as finances. It gives huge peace of mind to those left behind.

Sadly, too many ignore making a will, always putting it off for another day, until that day never comes.

It is also vital that a Will is made by a solicitor who understands the process and who is qualified, regulated and insured in the highly unlikely event that there should be any problems. It provides great peace of mind for the family who are reassured that the estate of their loved one is dealt with according to their wishes.

If you wish to know more about making a Will, or updating a Will, which is just as important if there have been major changes, such as re-marriage, we are happy to discuss it with you. Please contact us today.