Jack­son Bar­rett & Gass are again remind­ing peo­ple of the impor­tance of mak­ing a Will after research* has revealed that over 28 mil­lion of the UK adult pop­u­la­tion (58%) is cur­rent­ly with­out a Will.

If you die with­out a Will (“IntEs­tate”), then the law will dic­tate who amongst your rel­a­tives receives what, which may mean rel­a­tives you do not like or have not seen for years. If you die with­out rel­a­tives then the state will take your Estate.

Inter­est­ing­ly, 11% believe their Estate will go to the right peo­ple auto­mat­i­cal­ly. The Intes­ta­cy rules also do not reflect mod­ern soci­ety, and leave stepchil­dren and unmar­ried part­ners par­tic­u­lar­ly vulnerable.

In their most basic form, Wills are rec­om­mend­ed so that you can choose how your prop­er­ty or pos­ses­sions are dis­trib­uted upon death. At best, Wills can be used for Inher­i­tance Tax (IHT) plan­ning and sav­ing tax allowances. The same research revealed 42% of UK adults have not thought about the impact of inher­i­tance tax on the Estate they wish to leave behind when they pass away.

Pro­cras­ti­na­tion remains the num­ber one for not writ­ing a Will. 11% said it nev­er occurred to them and 21% felt that they did­n’t have any­thing of val­ue to leave behind. Near­ly a third of those with­out a Will (30%) stat­ed that they plan to make one when they get old­er’: 32% of those over 55 do not have a Will in place and 64% of those aged 35 to 54 have not yet writ­ten a Will.

Spe­cial­ist Wills & Pro­bate Solic­i­tor, Sean Bar­row, says: I gen­uine­ly believe that the aware­ness of the impor­tance of hav­ing a Will is increas­ing. How­ev­er, it is still a sig­nif­i­cant root of finan­cial and per­son­al prob­lems when a friend or rel­a­tive dies with­out a Will.

On a basic lev­el, peo­ple are left sec­ond-guess­ing about the inten­tions of the deceased, when emo­tions tend to be run­ning high. On a more com­plex lev­el, the Intes­ta­cy rules don’t allow for mod­ern fam­i­lies, and Inher­i­tance Tax is also not considered.

For the equiv­a­lent cost of a meal for 4 in a restau­rant, an indi­vid­ual can ensure that their wish­es are car­ried out and that no prob­lems await their loved ones.”

Jack­son Bar­rett & Gass have devel­oped a Will ser­vice to make it tai­lored to the indi­vid­ual in an attempt to make it as easy and reas­sur­ing as pos­si­ble. Clients can choose from face-to-face meet­ings, includ­ing Home vis­its, to a ful­ly elec­tron­ic and remote service.


* Opini­um Research online poll of 2009 UK adults from 280912 — 01/11/12

Author: Rick Bar­row