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The “overwhelming majority” of Britons do not have an up-to-date will despite a “striking shift” that has seen many people focus on getting their affairs in order as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
Research conducted by the Law Society in the past months found that 7 per cent of respondents had made or updated their will during the first UK-wide lockdown.
While that may not at first glance seem that remarkable a figure, Law Society president David Greene confirmed it was still substantial, “given how many people do not have a will”.
Almost 60 per cent of those surveyed by the Law Society admitted they did not have a will, and just 29 per cent indicated they had an up-to-date will that properly reflected their current intentions.
Meanwhile, consumer organisation Which? last week announced that its will service saw orders more than triple in March 2020, compared to the same period last year. In April, orders grew by a massive 682 per cent – an almost eight- fold increase – year-on-year.
Speaking to the Law Society Gazette, Mr Greene added: “It is hugely encouraging so many people have made wills during the first UK lockdown, but the fact remains that the overwhelming majority of the UK public do not have an up-to-date will as we enter the second wave of Covid-19 cases.
“In some demographics – such as urban and BAME communities – will-making is particularly uncommon. Only 25 per cent of those from a BAME background had a will, compared to 42 per cent of white respondents. Similarly, only 36 per cent of people in urban areas had a will compared to 54% from rural areas.”
People gave researchers a variety of reasons why they had not made a will. Almost a quarter of those polled (24 per cent) said they did not have anything of value to leave to their loved ones, while 20 per cent said they had never had the time, and18 per cent felt they were “too young to make a will”.
Fraser and Fraser remains fully operational and is here to deal with any probate or missing beneficiary queries you may have during this exceptional time. Please do not hesitate to get in touch with business development manager Nick Howitt. We are able to offer all our services remotely and we have secure video conferencing facilities.