What is the difference between a Solicitor and a Will Writer?
We live in a society where we shop around and find the best deals for pretty much everything. However when it comes to writing a Will, the cheapest option may not always be the best. Here we look at the how using a Solicitor for Will writing has advantages that will give you added peace of mind.
There are some important considerations when choosing Will writing service:
1. Training and qualifications
Will writing is not as simple as writing a Will. A solicitor will ask questions about you, your family, background and assets so they can advise if there is anything you should consider that may have implications on your Will. A solicitor can also provide advice in respect of inheritance tax, property ownership, Trusts, Inheritance Act claims and other legal matters that most people do not realise are linked with your Will.
To qualify as a solicitor, we go through years and years of training to be an expert in our area of law. A Will writer does not go through the same vigorous training as a solicitor and they may not have the experience to advise on complicated situations.
Solicitors do tend to cost a lot more than Will writers however you really do get what you pay for. You are not just paying for the document, you are paying for the advice that comes with the Will.
2. Regulation and Insurance
Solicitors are regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and in order to be regulated, they have to obtain Professional Indemnity Insurance. This means that if anything goes wrong, your estate will still be protected for your family.
There is no regulation in place for Will writers and insurance is not compulsory.
3. Mental Capacity and Undue Influence
We always ensure that we meet our clients at some point during the matter. Although this has been quite testing during the coronavirus pandemic, we have ensured that the Will is signed by the client on their own (or with their spouse if making mirror Wills) and in the presence of two independent witnesses while adhering to social distancing requirements.
Some Will writers are happy to write Wills by taking instructions via email or over the phone which means they cannot always be satisfied that the client has full mental capacity to make a Will or the client is not under any pressure to make or change a Will.
Solicitors are trained to assess the capacity of the client to ensure they can make a Will. Likewise, solicitors are able to identify reg flags or indications of undue pressure or influence.
Wills can be challenged by relatives if they do not believe the person making the Will had testamentary capacity or they were pressured to do so. You can therefore have peace of mind knowing that an expert is dealing with such an important document.
Although it may mean paying out more money initially, it could save you a lot more in the long run to ensure there are no complications or challenges when your loved one sadly dies. We offer fixed fees to prepare Wills which are drafted by a fully qualified solicitor. Please get in touch with our friendly team to find our more information or to book a free initial appointment.
At Watson Thomas our staff can work from home and access all systems so even if all are required to self-isolate this will not affect the day-to-day running of your case. We can also hold appointments via telephone and video link as needs be to ensure that your service is not interrupted.