Court of Protection
Half of Wills in Havering and Brentwood are out of date
Of those, over a third (31%) haven’t updated it for over seven years, and nearly a fifth (18%) haven’t dusted it off in more than a decade.
Having an up-to-date and well drafted Will is crucial in ensuring your wishes are carried out in the way you’d like when you die.
This year, SFE, a membership body representing over 1,600 solicitors specialising in working with older and vulnerable people, has launched “Update Your Will Week” (28th March – 3rd April) in a bid to raise awareness of the importance of updating your Will regularly.
Wills should be reviewed and updated every five years, or when a major change in your life occurs that impacts you or your loved ones, such as divorce, marriage, a new birth or even death in the family.
SFE’s research has revealed that almost a third (32%) of people in London with a Will have had significant changes to their lives and circumstances since they drafted it.
An unchecked and outdated Will could cause severe implications for your loved ones after death – including missed inheritances and higher inheritance tax fees.
SFE’s research revealed that:
- Only 16% of Britons realise that remarrying invalidates a Will.
- Less than a third (31%) of people realise stepchildren won’t be included in your Will unless you stipulate that separately.
- 17% of people wrongly think you can update your Will by making changes on the original document and initialling them.
The findings have also revealed that 55% of people living in the capital don’t have a Will in place at all – a worryingly high figure.
Samantha Hamilton, SFE Solicitor and Head of Court of Protection department at Mullis & Peake, said:
“Many people assume that once you have drafted a Will you don’t ever have to review it, and that your wishes will be carried out as you wish them to be posthumously – but unfortunately, that’s far from true. If you remarry, for example, your Will gets revoked. Or if you marry into a family and have stepchildren that you’d like to inherit your assets – this won’t happen automatically unless you stipulate it in a new Will. All these details are crucial to avoid family disputes – which we know can be very distressing for your loved ones.”
To find out more, or to find your local SFE accredited solicitor, visit: www.sfe.legal