October 30, 2015

Sizeable majority of city’s adults don’t have a will

A survey by the website Unbiased.co.uk found that while the situation in the capital was slightly better than other cities including Manchester, Liverpool and Birmingham, there were still a substantial number of people yet to put their affairs in order.

Predictably the likelihood of having a valid will was decided very much by the age of respondents (only 13 per cent of under 30s have taken the necessary steps, compared to 82 per cent over the age of 70.)

Of those who were yet to make a will, almost a quarter admitted they had been putting it off deliberately.

Others claimed that they didn’t think they had enough assets to bother making the arrangements or believed the estate would automatically pass to the right individuals in the event of their death. The estate of an individual with no spouse, civil partner or children, who dies without a Will, will pass to that individual’s parents if they are alive. This can have unintended and adverse inheritance tax consequences.

Over one in ten of those questioned admitted they had never given any thought to a will.

Karen Barrett, chief executive of Unbiased, said: ‘Our research made two especially interesting findings, which are rather at odds with each other.

“We confirmed that people really do want to ensure their loved ones are taken care of after they’ve gone – but that most aren’t doing anything about this.

“Writing a will clearly has significant emotional implications, so it’s likely that people delay doing it through a mixture of denial and simply not getting around to it.”

For advice on making a will, please contact Tony Millson and Deanna Hurst in Royds’ Private Client Team

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