Are DIY Wills worth saving a few pounds?

They could cost could cost you more in the long run!

It may seem like a cost effective way to obtain a Will, but purchasing a DIY (or homemade) Will can come with costly dangers.

 

Creating a Will allows you protect your family, decide where your assets and possessions will go and who will take care of your estate after you die. Some people opt to create their own Will at home.

While DIY Wills may come with obvious benefits, namely the low cost compared to hiring a specialist solicitor, they could cost you much more in the long run.

Not only do you risk leaving your family with a financial and emotional mess, but your estate could be eaten away by legal bills or unnecessary tax.

Poorly drafted or ineffective DIY Wills which contain errors could lead to huge fees and delays, not to mention stress, whilst the problems are resolved after someone passes away.

Some of the most common mistakes with DIY wills relate to the signing of the document itself, such as failing to get it witnessed correctly.

Other challenges to a Will could focus on the validity of the document and whether you had the correct state of mind to make a Will in the first place (this is known as testamentary capacity), whether you were influenced by others to either make a particular gift or not to make a gift and finally, whether, the way in which you have worded the gifts and how you own the assets, can actually give effect to the gift on a practical level.

Mistakes such as these can pose real issues.

Problems can also arise if your circumstances change, as many DIY wills may not accommodate this.

DIY Wills are also to blame for a prolonged probate ordeal for 38,000 families a year. The number of inheritance disputes heard in the High Court increased from 227 in 2018 to 368 in 2019 which is largely due to DIY Wills.

Howells Solicitors Partner Lindsey Rawson says “The complexity of modern day estates and family relationships means it vital for an individual to seek professional and expert advice when creating their Will. Issues and inaccuracies with DIY Wills can make them ineffective and can cost more in many ways, leaving stress and additional costs for your loved ones.”

Citizens Advice suggest that anybody looking to take out a Will should seek out a professional, such as a solicitor.

Howells can help. We have an expert Wills, Trust and Probate department, offering a range of fixed fees and a free 15 minute consultation.

We are normal, down to earth people and can support you to create a Will and make special arrangements for your family. We have fixed fees and offer a free initial 15 minute consultation. Call us to find out more on 0114 249666 or email us at [email protected]