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63% of Britons have no will

63% of Britons have no will

Nearly two-thirds of Britons (63%) do not have a will – with many people employing a "head-in-the sand" approach to them, according to a new study.

Investment managers Brewin Dolphin found that 57% of married couples do not have a will, meaning they would have no control over their houses, savings or possessions if either of them were to die without creating one.

The main triggers for people creating a will are said to be childbirth (18%), reaching a landmark age (15%), marriage (13%) or taking out a mortgage (12%). The sudden death of a friend or family member can prompt people to draft a will, and did so in 11% of the cases in the study.

Meanwhile, factors which were found to delay people writing their wills are: not thinking they have enough assets or possessions to make it worthwhile (30%), thinking they are too young (24%) or simply seeing it as not important at the present time (another 24%). A total of 13% think the idea is just too morbid to think about.

Jacqueline Almond, partner in the Wills, Trusts and Probate team at IBB Solicitors commented:

“Will making should definitely be on the 2012 resolution lists for 63 percent of British residents.

"Dying without a will could create a raft of problems for those left behind. Many assume that their estate will automatically go to their closest family, but if you die ‘intestate’ (without a will), that may not necessarily be the case. Your heirs may not receive what you wish to pass onto them, or your assets could be reduced through inheritance tax."

For advice on issues relating to wills, trusts, probate and tax and estate planning, contact an expert wills and probate solicitor by calling us on 01494 790002 or email us at estatemanagement@ibblaw.co.uk.