To do it yourself or not to do it yourself that's the question

Wednesday 7th September 2022

The increase in ‘Do It Yourself Wills’ is a concern and due to the recent pandemic the increase in the number of these Wills has been dramatic.  The importance of leaving clear and unambiguous instruction is vital and without this family disputes, and in some cases legal battles, are becoming more common place. 

By the time these disputes arise, it is of course too late to do anything about it.

What is a DIY Will?

As the name suggests a DIY Will is a Will written by the individual without seeking professional advice and guidance. The problem is that there isn’t a ‘template’ that can be used for all situations as everyone has a different set of circumstances.

Why should I use Waldrons Solicitors?

It is a fact of society today that people are becoming more litigious, especially when it comes to Wills. In the past when someone may have accepted they have been omitted from a Will, they are now more likely to make a challenge due to the options available to them.

By using Waldrons and taking tailored advice to your circumstances, ensures that some of the common issues are avoided such as:

● The Will not being signed and witnessed correctly

● Ambiguous or confusing wording

● The person instructing the Will not having the required mental capacity or being coerced or unduly influenced by family members or other potential beneficiaries.

When a client makes an appointment to discuss their Will, where possible, we meet face to face to ensure that there is no undue influence or coercion, and that the client fully understands the instructions they are giving.

Details are taken regarding the client’s assets and liabilities and their family structure as it is just as important, if not more so, to understand who may be excluded and who could therefore make a claim on the estate. 

Advice is given to the client to mitigate any claims that may be forthcoming. Clearly with a DIY Will the person making the Will would be unaware of these potential claims and they would be overlooked, making a claim much more likely to be successful. After each meeting, comprehensive attendance notes are prepared.

These attendance notes not only provide an overview of the meeting but (among other things) confirm the date of the meeting, the instructions given by the client and who was present at the meeting. Should a claim be made, then these attendance notes form vital evidence in order to fight any claims being made.

It is therefore vital that the proper legal advice is sought when considering your Will.  This is so that the chances of a claim on your estate being successful are reduced dramatically if your Will is prepared by a professional.

If you or anybody you know have made a DIY Will it is important that this is reviewed with the benefit of legal advice before it is too late. To discuss your Will or review an existing Will whether this is a DIY Will or not, contact Waldrons Solicitors on 01384 811811 today!