Do you know who’s really writing your Will?
It would be easy to assume that because a company is providing a legal service, the person drafting your Will would have some sort of legal background, sadly that’s often not the case.
Will writing is an unregulated area of law. A person has the right to make a Will, without having to employ a professional to draft it for them, and rightly so.
If, however, you have employed a non-legal company who provides legal services, there is no guarantee that the person doing the actual drafting of the Will has any legal training or legal background.
There are various ways a Will can be written a few of which are set out below;
- Do It Yourself (DIY) Will packs which are widely available. Often they are very basic and the onus is on the individual to not only draft their own Will but ensure that it has been properly executed or finalised. If a Will is not properly executed or finalised then the validity of the Will and the wishes expressed within it can be challenged.
- There are companies or individuals who provide legal services. These companies are often unregulated, so there is usually little recourse if something goes awry. They deal in quantity and not quality. Often they can and do outsource their Will writing so it can be very difficult to identify exactly who is doing the writing and what their qualifications are, if any. Unregulated companies do not have the same rules imposed on them about insurance and accountability which means, should something go wrong there may be no insurance to protect you from financial loss and it can be difficult to establish who is accountable for the error in the first place.
- Finally there are law firms, who are regulated by and compliant to the strict standards set by the Solicitors Regulatory Authority and the Law Society.
A Will is an important document for many different reasons; ultimately it’s your last say on how your estate should be handled. Which is why it’s so important to know whether the person writing your Will, is experienced, regulated and compliant.
The information contained in this article is for general guidance only and is not intended to be legal advice. Professional advice should always be taken on the application of the law in any particular situation