I’ve been conscious for some time now that we don’t have a will set up.
It’s something I’ve been looking into but the options seem quite broad.
There’s everything from a do it yourself kit right up to paying a solicitor to do the job for you.
I’m aware that dying without a will in place can make things more complicated than they need to be.
Yet at the same time, do my circumstances warrant paying a couple of hundred pounds for it?
I found out some answers on MoneySavingsExpert.com.
You can pick up a DIY will pack relatively cheaply and get the ball rolling.
I’m tempted to do it this way but if I don’t get the basic legal requirements right it would just be a waste of money.
The only way to be certain the will would be valid is to get it checked by a solicitor.
That sort of defeats the object of saving money by doing it yourself.
My wife and I don’t have a complicated estate though so it might be worth us considering this option.
You really do have to consider though that if anything goes wrong you won’t benefit from any protection such as from the Legal Ombudsman.
Free Professional Wills
Some employers and trade unions offer free will writing services.
As a stay at home dad I don’t think there’s a trade union I could join however!
Even some home or car insurance providers provide legal services which include a will writing service.
I just checked ours and they don’t unfortunately.
Not to worry because there still other ways to get a free will drawn up.
Although like everything that’s free there’s usually a catch.
At certain times of the year, you can get access to free charity-based will writing schemes.
They hope in return that you’ll make a donation, although there’s no obligation to do so.
Will Aid runs each November and is available throughout the UK.
They team up with over 900 solicitors to provide basic wills.
In return they ask for a donation of around £95 for a single will and £150 for a couple.
Will Relief Scotland
Will Relief Scotland runs each September throughout Scotland.
It’s a partnership between Scottish solicitors and four charities.
The suggested donation is around £80 for a single will and £120 for a couple.
The Children’s Hospital
The Children’s Hospital Charity have partnered with a national law firm to offer a discounted will-writing service all year round.
Irwin Mitchell will produce a standard single will for a discounted fee of £100 or a standard mirror will costs £190.
They donate 20% of the fee you pay to charity.
If your circumstances aren’t complicated like mine, you might also pick up a will online.
You benefit from the same sort of protection as you would be going to see a solicitor in person but as it’s online it’s usually cheaper.
I had no idea that Which? did wills!
For £169 for a single will and £259 for joint (mirror) wills, they’re not the cheapest option.
But they often offer discounts which makes it a bit more affordable.
Once you’ve purchased your will, you complete it in your own time and then it’s checked over and reviewed by Which?’s will specialists.
Assuming everything’s okay, they then send you a printed about bound copy of the will.
You can then return it to Which? for secure storage.
Other Online Solicitors
Other online solicitors that provide a will service are:
They range in price and Rocket Lawyer is a subscription service.
Potential Stumbling Block
I’m currently living in Scotland but don’t plan to stick around, especially with the extra uncertainty of constant referendums on independence.
The trouble is that Scotland has a different legal system to England and Wales (as does Northern Ireland).
So if I set up a will in Scotland it would be on a different basis than if I had done it South of the border.
Supposedly there is a reciprocal agreement between the different legal jurisdictions.
But if you’ve ever tried to pay for anything in England with a Scottish bank note, then you can imagine my trepidation.
I’m not sure how long it will take us to get out of here. It may be prudent just to wait until we do though.
Have You Got A Will In Place?
Do you have a will set up? How did you go about it and do you have any recommendations?
If you don’t have one set up, do you plan to get one?