Home » Legacy » Five ways to help you write a will
Your Later Life Q3 2023

Five ways to help you write a will

enior couple, documents and sign contract for life insurance or home mortgage.
enior couple, documents and sign contract for life insurance or home mortgage.
iStock / Getty Images Plus / PeopleImages

Writing a will is an essential step in ensuring that your worldly possessions are passed on just as you wish, allowing you to look after all those you care about — family, friends and good causes.

While it can seem daunting, writing a will doesn’t have to be complicated. There are several options to choose from, giving you the flexibility to find the one that works best for you. Remember A Charity summarises some of the different ways you can be sure your legacy lives on.

Use a solicitor or professional will-writer

Solicitors or professional will writers can provide you with will-writing and estate-planning services, with bespoke advice and support throughout. This is ideal for anyone looking for a comprehensive approach and to ensure that nothing gets forgotten. It’s particularly important for those with complex needs or large estates and those looking for advice on inheritance tax considerations and more. You can use the Remember A Charity ’Find A Solicitor’ directory to help you find a solicitor or will writer near you.

Online will-writing services

Technology has helped make will-writing more accessible and efficient. Online will-writing services typically offer a questionnaire-led approach, helping you gather all the key information you need to generate a simple will. They are convenient and affordable, which makes them an attractive option to those with straightforward estate needs. However, they don’t always offer personalised legal advice.

It’s important to understand what legal support will be provided and at what stage of the process, ensuring you can access the support you need. Providers like Co-op Legal Services and Bequeathed offer more of a hybrid approach, enabling you to start the process online before talking through your needs with a solicitor.

It’s important to understand what legal support will be provided and at what stage of the process.

Free will-writing services

Many charities and campaigns run free will-writing services online, over the telephone or in person. They encourage people to consider leaving a charitable gift in their will, presenting a unique opportunity to plan for the future while supporting causes close to their hearts.

You may wish to write it during campaigns such as Free Wills Month (March and October), Remember A Charity Week (September) or Will Aid (November) when many advisers offer free wills. It’s important to be aware that free services usually only cover simple wills, which may not be suitable if your estate is more complex.

Try to do it yourself

Technically, there’s nothing to stop you from writing your own will, using a template document or a DIY kit. However, the smallest of inaccuracies can have big consequences, so, where possible, it’s advisable to seek guidance from a legal professional — giving you the confidence that it is comprehensive and legally valid.

Whichever route you choose, a legally valid will that accurately reflects your circumstances is the best way to support those you leave behind and to safeguard your charitable gifts. It will help you pass on something wonderful for generations to come.

Next article