You can choose to make a Will yourself, or by instructing Will writers or solicitors.
Solicitors must obtain formal qualifications, undertake ongoing professional training, be a member of a regulatory body and be insured. Unregulated Will writers do not need to meet any of these standards.
This means it can be harder for you to be sure that a Will writer has the expertise to provide the quality of advice you need. Similarly, if problems arise it may be difficult to seek redress and obtain adequate compensation. This is particularly important with Wills as problems are often only apparent after your death, by which point it might be too late for your family to resolve the issue.
Peter Kirrane, the head of our Wills and Probate service, recently saw a client who had lost his wife, after drawing up their Wills through an unregulated Will writer.
Our client’s wife had wanted to ensure that her husband could continue living in her property but, following his death, it would pass to her children from a previous marriage.
Unfortunately, she died without a valid Will as the Will writer did not ensure that it was properly signed. This meant that due to the fixed rules of intestacy, which set out how her estate would be divided; our client inherited the property outright.
Our client could have retained ownership of the property to the detriment of his step-children. But as he wanted to respect his late wife’s intentions, we arranged for a ‘Deed of Variation’ to be put in place which altered the distribution of his wife’s estate. This ensured that the property will eventually pass to his stepchildren. If our client had not been willing to do this, his step-children might not have been able to protect their right to the property.
Our Wills and Probate team advise varied clients, all looking to protect their finances, property, and other valuable goods after they’ve died. We recognise how important it is that this is done correctly, to provide peace of mind to everyone involved.
We are on hand to help with any queries you may have in regards to Will writing. Our Wills solicitors & law firms are based in Wakefield, Dewsbury, and Horsforth. Feel free to call us on 0330 300 1103 or request a call back by clicking here.