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  • Writer's pictureGregory Deer

You should write a will… now

Having many conversations with working professionals over the past 12 months, broadly I’d estimate 80% don’t have an up to date will in place.


Most of you will be fine. One day you’ll realise it’s essential and get it ahead of death.

For others, not getting a will earlier could be a total disaster.


There’s no way of knowing which group you’ll be in if you don’t have a will.


Why you need a will?


Having a will allows you to control what happens to your property and assets beyond death. If you don’t have a will, your estate will be distributed according to the laws of intestacy.


The detail is not needed for this blog, but in summary, without a will you don’t decide what happens to your property and assets, the laws of intestacy do.


Key considerations for having a will


  • Administration nightmare. Not having a will causes additional aggro when your loved ones need it least.

  • Children. Without named guardians for your children in a will, the court of protection will appoint guardians. You have no control.

  • Unmarried. Having a will becomes even more important if you’re not married.

  • Tenants in common. If you own a property on a tenants in common basis, on death, your share of the ownership will pass to your estate. It could cause issues for the other owner.


Your options for writing a will


1.    DIY – Do it yourself


My least recommended option is to do it yourself. While costs are low, your will could be invalid if written incorrectly.


2.    Online will writing service


For a cost effective will writing service, you may choose to work with an online will writer. Will writing is not a regulated service and you should be satisfied with the quality of your will writer.


You may wish to look at qualifications of the person you use, whether they are a member of a trade body (Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners, Society of Will Writers etc.), or if the service is covered by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA). Good reviews ≠ good will writer.


3.    Use a solicitor


You may have a connection with a local solicitor, or you could ask a professional for a recommendation. Using a solicitor may cost more but more value could be added depending on your will writing needs.


Solicitors are regulated by the SRA and you will find the most protection with this service.


Summary


Talking about death isn’t fun when the sun is shining, but it’s not great when it’s raining either.

Maybe this summer it’s time to write your first will, or update one you have already.


If you would like an introduction to an online will writer who's suitably qualified, or a solicitor based in Herts, Bucks or London, please let us know and we'd be happy to make a recommendation.


The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate will writing,

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