Most consumers think all Will Writers are Solicitors
2nd February, 2010
The results of a recent survey show that consumers are confused about the role of will writers with 67% of those questioned wrongly believing that all will writers are solicitors. 82% thought that training and qualifications are required before someone can become a will writer.
This is not the case as, unlike solicitors, will writers do not have to receive any sort of formal training. Solicitors themselves are also regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority which means that they have to comply with a detailed code of conduct and take out comprehensive professional indemnity insurance which will writers are not obliged to do.
A partner in the Wills Trusts and Tax team at Aaron & Partners notes, “These findings are a real worry. In most cases, it is only after someone has died that the problems in their will come to light and by that time the will writing company may have disappeared. Poorly drafted wills can be very expensive to sort out”.
“Not only do solicitors have to undergo a required amount of training, they have to update their knowledge with continued professional development. Solicitors are also aware of other issues which can impact on a person’s will, such as business and property issues whereas a will writer does not have this level of expertise to draw on.”
“At this firm, all wills drafted are checked by “Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners” (STEP) qualified partners. The solicitors in the Wills Trust and Tax team specialise in this area of work and are qualified to handle issues which may arise during the drafting of wills, such as testamentary capacity concerns.”
“Our advice to those who want to make a will is not to assume that the person offering to make a will is a solicitor and to ensure that they have the relevant qualifications and experience. As a firm, we now spend more time helping people sort out the problems arising from badly drafted Wills than we do actually drafting Wills.”
For information, please contact the Aaron & Partners Wills, Trusts & Taxes team on 01244 405555 or email them here.