More than 6 out of 10 people prefer to have a qualified solicitor to write their will so they can be confident that it’s done properly, according to new research.
A survey carried out by Will Aid, the organisation that encourages people to leave some of their estate to charity, found that 62% of people who made a will in 2015 used the services of a solicitor.
This compared with only 12% who used an unregulated will writer, 9% who made a homemade will and 17% who used DIY kits or banks and other services.
Will Aid says many people are unaware that will writers can practise without having proper training, regulation or insurance.
Peter de Vena Franks, campaign director, of Will Aid, said: “Drawing up a will is a vital financial planning step but the lure of the cheaper alternatives to solicitors can mean the document is not properly written or legally binding.
“While an off-the-shelf will might seem attractive to those who are watching the pennies, it could be money wasted rather than saved.
“It is evident that the public prefer to use a solicitor to write their will, wherever possible. They are aware that with a solicitor you can be assured of a valid will and if anything does go wrong there is proper insurance and redress. This may not be the case with an unregulated provider and certainly isn’t the case if you write your own will.”
The Law Society has also urged people to make a will and ensure that they only use a fully qualified solicitor. A spokesman said: “A badly drafted will can cause more problems than no will at all, so the Law Society advises against using unregulated will writers. All solicitors are subject to strict regulation to ensure that they deliver the best service to their clients, unlike unregulated will writers.
“Solicitors are unparalleled in the will writing market as only they have the breadth of training to consider wider implications and complex issues, including tax and family law.”
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