Last year 9000 Wills were found by Lloyds Bank in a storage unit that they did not know about! This means that many estates may have been distributed incorrectly. To ensure this does not happen to you, consideration should be given to how you store your Will. Please contact us at A R K for advice. We can ensure safe storage of your Will or if you wish to store at home, we can advise you how best to do this….
Being able to safely store and easily locate your Will could mean the difference between having a legally valid Will that can be accessed and used right away, or officially dying “Intestate” – meaning that there was no Will, or that no Will could be found. The issue of a missing Will can create a lot of problems for families, and the situation often causes unpleasant disputes between family members which can last for many years.
So, what are your options when thinking about storing your Will, and what are the benefits and drawbacks of each option?
Keep your Will yourself – the benefit to this option is that it is completely free, however there are lots of risks attached to doing this. Your Will could be damaged by flood or fire; it could be lost if for example you move home, or even get thrown away by mistake. One of the key considerations is whether your family or executors would know where to find it. If you do choose to keep your Will yourself, you should tell your executors where you are keeping it and we recommend you store it in a fire safe box.
A R K Lasting Powers & Wills can arrange storage for you – there will be a small yearly charge to facilitate this. We offer an alternative to home storage to give our clients peace of mind, knowing that their Will is safe and secure. It will only be released from storage either when the person who has made the Will requests it, or on production of a death certificate after they have passed away.
To give you further peace of mind that your Will cannot be lost, misplaced or ignored on your death, you can also have it registered with Certainty, The National Will Register. There is a small one-off fee for this service (currently £30 per Will). There are over 7 million Wills registered with this service. Certainty Will Registration is proven to protect the Testator’s beneficiaries by ensuring their Will can be found. Certainty does not disclose the existence of a Will until after death, and do not need to see a copy to register it. The register simply records the fact that you have made a Will, and where it is being stored. A R K can register the existence of your Will on your behalf.
Contact us if you need more information regarding Will storage.