Do I need to prepare a Declaration of Faith?
Indeed, this is encouraged amongst Muslims whilst finalising your wishes in your Will. This can be prepared free of charge as part and parcel of preparing your Will.
A declaration of faith is a document where you declare certain true facts, in particular:
That there is nothing worthy of worship but the one, the merciful, the almighty Allah. That He is the one God and has no partner. That the Prophet Muhammad (may peace and blessing be upon him) was the true and last messenger of all prophets before Him. That paradise is true, and hell is true. That the day of judgement is true and shall come, and where Allah shall resurrect the dead.
What is an Islamic Will?
An Islamic Will is a legal document that is drafted to ensure that your assets are distributed in accordance with Islamic (Shariah) law, after your death. An Islamic Will requires careful drafting so that the Islamic Will is compliant with the law of this country as well as Islamic (Shariah) law.
What is the purpose of an Islamic Will?
An Islamic Will is drafted to ensure that your estate is to be dealt with in accordance with Islamic (Shariah) law, in particular specific shares to be distributed amongst specific family members. The correct distribution is a compulsory obligation (Fard) for a Muslim.
It will also state who you have appointed to deal with the administration of your estate (Your Executors) and ensures that your Executors have all the necessary powers they need to deal with the administration of your estate in accordance with Islamic law.
Who can make an Islamic Will?
In England & Wales, anyone can make a Will providing you are 18 or over and of sound mind, memory and understanding.
An Islamic Will is not just for the elderly. It is also important for anyone who has children as you can then deal with who is to act as guardian of your minor children, should you die whilst they are below the age of 18. This will also prevent conflict amongst the family as to who is to act as guardian(s).
Why should I make an Islamic Will?
As a Muslim, you should make an Islamic Will to clearly state that you wish your estate to be distributed in accordance with Islamic (Shariah) law.
Making an Islamic Will does not attract the inevitable, it merely ensures that you have your affairs in order and avoids loved ones having to face unnecessary legal and financial difficulties at a very difficult time.
What is the difference between an Islamic Will and a Standard Will?
Legally, there is not much difference as both are valid in England and Wales. Practically, the difference lies in how your wealth is to be distributed and who your heirs are. In an Islamic Will your wealth is distributed in accordance with the Qur’an and Sunnah to your closest relatives. In a normal Will you choose your heirs and how your wealth is to be distributed. Therefore, it is important that the person drafting your Islamic Will is well versed in the intricacies of Islamic laws of inheritance.
Who will be my Executors and what do they do?
Your Executors will be the persons you wish to deal with the administration of your estate after your death. Your Executors (otherwise and in usual cases also your trustees) shall have the responsibility to ensure that your estate is distributed in accordance with Islamic law.
Choose your Executor(s) carefully as this can determine how quickly and efficiently the administration of your estate is progressed.
You should also consider appointing Professional Executors to deal with the administration and distribution of your estate and especially where you have more complex family or financial circumstances. Examples of such circumstances include where you have children from previous marriages, potential contentious issues, if you have a business, numerous investment properties, and/or overseas assets.
Appointing Guardian(s) for my Children
Many people are deterred from making a Will because they do not want to think of their children without them. A Will can reflect a parent’s wishes and clearly state who will care for a child /children in the event of the death of the parents or guardians. Why leave this decision to the courts?
When can I amend or revoke my Islamic Will?
You can amend or revoke your Will at any time before your death and there are some circumstances where a Will is automatically amended or revoked.
Upon divorce, a Will is altered insofar as any gift to a former spouse is rendered invalid.
Upon marriage (unless made in contemplation of the event), a Will is revoked.
When a new Will is written the old Will should be destroyed to avoid any confusion at a later date.
What happens if I do not make an Islamic Will?
If you have not or do not make a valid Islamic Will before your death, then the Intestacy Rules will apply. The law does not provide well for modern family situations and the Intestacy Rules are complicated, but generally your surviving spouse will benefit in precedence to anyone else. However, they may not receive all of your estate, depending on whether or not you have children. If you do not leave a surviving spouse or children, then the intestacy rules set out who will benefit from your estate (depending on which of your relatives have survived you).
If you have not made a valid Will then the law also sets out who is allowed to administer your estate, and possibly not the personal representatives which you would have appointed.
If potential beneficiaries cannot be found then your estate will go to the Crown!
Do you charge for storage?
Wills may be stored securely with us, absolutely free of charge.