May 19, 2016

Growing number of intestacy queries

Citizens Advice said that it had received 1,522 queries about intestacy in 2011 and 3,747 last year.

There has also been a rise in the number of queries which related to executing a will – 11,137 last year, up from 8,160 in 2011.

The increase in enquiries, which was revealed on Radio 5 this week, is set against the backdrop of research which has shown that a clear majority of UK adults have not made a will.

A YouGov poll of more than 1,700 individuals, which was conducted last year, found that around two thirds of people had yet to put their affairs in order.

One man, who did not want to give his full name, told the BBC that it had taken two years to administer his cousin’s £700,000 estate after the relative died intestate.

And the importance of making a will was reinforced by the Law Society’s Jonathan Smithers.

“A will helps to ensure that your assets are divided among the family, friends and charities of your choice, and can help you manage the amount of Inheritance Tax (IHT) you pay,” he said.

“If you die without a will your final wishes may well go unheeded, and your loved ones may have to cope with additional financial stress at a time of bereavement.”

For legal advice on drafting or updating a will please contact Tony Millson ([email protected]) and Deanna Hurst ([email protected]) in Royds’ Private Client team.

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