Statistically speaking more than half of the people reading this have yet to make their Will or arrange a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA).
Yet, 100% of us are going die and 1 in 4 of us will lose mental capacity at some point in our lives.
If you’re in the group that has yet to arrange either your Will or LPA, then it is important that you are aware of the importance of using a regulated and qualified Estate Planner or solicitor before you do.
In Worthing there are many solicitors (all of which will be SRA members) and a few Will Writers. There is only one company who are members of the Institute of Professional Willwriters – Nsure Estate Planning Services. In 2011 the Legal Services Board asked the Legal Service Consumer panel to examine the Will writing market. This examination was backed by The Law Society and the investigation compared solicitors against members of The Institute of Professional Willwriters.
The outcome of the investigation was that there was absolutely no difference between the quality of Wills written by Institute of Professional Willwriters’ members versus members of the Law society – not a single percentage difference.
What this means for you as a consumer is that if you use Nsure or a solicitor you have the assurance that the person writing your Will is qualified to do so. They will have public liability insurance, will be DBS checked and in my case undergo many hours of CPD every year. If you use anyone else, you have none of these crucial benefits.
I often see on social media people tempted by local Will Writers offering cheapy Wills at £75 a pop or firms claiming that they can put your house in a trust to escape care home fees. The questions that I would always ask someone who is tempted by companies like this are these;
Why do you think they have made the choice to work without being regulated?
Is there a reason as to why they wouldn’t meet the Institute of Professional Will writers’ criteria?
Why would a reputable business not want to give their clients all the security they could?
Do you not think the local authority is wise to such trusts?
In my mind there can be no good answer to my questions and I would ask you to think long and hard before instructing any of them to draft something as important as your Will or arrange your Lasting Power of Attorney for you or part with your hard-earned cash on something that I promise you will not work. As a final illustration, this article from the BBC, whilst a year old, shows just what can happen if you sign up to a dodgy trust believing it will allow you to avoid care home fees.
If you have any questions about anything I’ve raised here or would like to make an appointment to write your Will or set up your LPA please contact me on 01903 821010 or via email email@example.com