Making a Will during Covid 19
Since the Covid-19 pandemic we have seen a large number of advertisements on social media for cheap Will writing. This level of advertising is raising huge concerns – now more than ever it is important to be attentive when making or updating a Will to ensure that it will be valid.
Our concerns for people making a Will during Covid-19 include the validity of the Will and the safety of people’s ID when disclosing personal details online. Kidd Rapinet urges people to take extreme caution when instructing any online firm – please do your due diligence and check the company on companies’ house and look for testimonials/recommendations from independent sources. If a deal looks too good to be true – it probably is. Please walk away and contact a reputable solicitor in your area. Many solicitors, including Kidd Rapinet, offer free advice. Please do not take any risks.
Currently, for a Will to be valid it must be signed by two witnesses present at the same time – the witnesses must be independent and not related to the person to whom the Will applies. The ministry of justice (MOJ) is looking into temporary relaxation of the rules given the current social distancing measures but, at the time of writing, there has been no change to the law.
We recommend before a video conference call with your solicitor that you prepare as much information as you can. Think about and write down the questions you would like to ask, prepare a list of your assets (this can be property, jewellery, art etc) and your finances – think about people you would like to benefit (beneficiary/ies) and who you would like to appoint to manage this for you (executor/s). Please see our FREE 8 step guide to creating a Will to help you.
We are currently taking instructions via video conferencing, drafting Wills and sending them via email or post (email is preferred). We can then go through the Will to agree or make any necessary amendments or changes and email/post for signature.
There are a number of ideas online for signing Wills including ringing neighbours and asking them to stand in their gardens (2 metres apart) – each watching the other sign the document but to be certain on validity, please call us and we can discuss with you suitable ways to have your Will signed and witnessed.
If you or anyone you know would like more advice on creating or amending a Will during Covid-19 please do get in touch. We have specialists at all 6 of our offices – Aylesbury, Farnham, High Wycombe, London, Maidenhead and Slough.