Posted: Dec 17, 2018
Wills and Probate

A recent consumer survey by IRN Research and Orchard Reports entitled The Wills & Probate Consumer Research Report 2018, showed that 60% of the people questioned did not know that will-writing is an unregulated activity.
Some legal services may only be carried out by authorised, regulated providers, such as solicitors. This means that those who require their services can be satisfied that they are getting a recognised, legal service and that the professionals involved have the appropriate insurance in place in case of any problems that may arise. However, in the case of will-writing, so-called ‘unauthorised providers’ can undertake these legal activities, but will not be subject to the same kind of compulsory regulation that authorised professionals are.
The problem with this is that most issues with will-writing do not come to light until an individual has died. Unregulated providers cannot currently be held to account for things that go wrong later because they are not subject to the same regulations nor any wider professional procedures. For example, it could be impossible to track an unregulated will-writer who has since left the business because there is no central register of will-writing service providers. This means less protection for the consumer and increases the costs to the person’s estate.
While the lack of regulation allows for a wider choice of legal services, the level of expertise and protection afforded by engaging the services of a regulated individual far outweighs this. If you are thinking about putting in place a new Will, or wish to have your current Will reviewed, please contact a member of our Wills and Probate team on 01562 852120.