Writing a Will Is Now Easier


Research from AA Legal Services suggests that half of Britons (48%) have not yet made a will.* Of those, more than half (56%) say they 'just haven't got around to it'. But 28% are more worried about the cost and complexity of writing a will, or concern about getting a lawyer involved. Roughly 6% think that writing a will is 'just too complicated'.

The AA/Populus study of 18,251 AA Members showed that women are much less likely to have written their will (46%) than men (53%).

The AA may have just removed some of the barriers to this important family task. We now offer a range of easy-access legal documents, which includes will writing. The range of topics (see below) comprises straightforward templates that demystify common legal concerns, and is backed by solid and reliable legal advice.

If you are an AA Home Insurance customer and already have the Home Legal Expenses extension, then the will writing service is free of charge with AA Legal Services. Simply log in using your policy number. Customers can also complete a free trial form online.

Don't worry if you're not an AA Home Insurance customer – the cost is £25 for the document only service.

According to Simon Douglas, director of AA Legal Services: "Writing a will is something that many people find difficult to approach. Young people are least likely to feel that writing a will is necessary. But even many in their fifties have yet to get around to it. Nearly half (48%) of those aged 45–54 and more than a quarter (28%) of 55–65 year-olds don't have a will."

Some people have a problem deciding who their estate should be left to, and this becomes much more pronounced among older people. This was cited as a reason for not writing a will by 4% of people overall, but this more than doubles to 9% of those aged over 65.

A fifth (19%) say it's not worth writing a will because they don't have much to leave.

"It's clear that people who haven't made a will come up with all sorts of reasons why not – it always seems to be something that can be put off to another day," Simon says. "But neglecting it until it really is too late leaves distressing problems for those who are left. It can take months to sort out the estate of those who have died without leaving a will."

He added that 13% believed they didn't need a will because they wanted everything to go to their partner – a belief particularly marked among men (16%). "If they realise the difficulties they'll leave for their loved ones, perhaps they'd think again," he says. "It's certainly not a foregone conclusion that your estate will automatically go to your partner, especially if you have surviving relatives who are likely to get a share. And if you live with someone outside of marriage or a civil partnership, your partner may get nothing at all. In extreme cases, your estate could even go to the Crown."

Douglas says that the new service couldn't be more straightforward or cost-effective: "No-one should delay deciding who inherits their estate – and not leave it to a court to decide."

Key research findings*

 

Do you have a will?

All %

Male %

Female %

Yes

50

53

46

No

48

45

53

Those in Wales and the north-west are least likely to have a will (both 54% 'no').

Those in the south are most likely to have a will (56% 'yes').


Why don't you have a will?

All %

Male %

Female %

Haven't got around to it

56

59

51

Don't have much to leave so don't need one

19

16

24

Worried about the cost of writing a will

16

13

19

Don't need one, everything goes to my partner

13

16

8

Worried about using a lawyer

12

12

13

Can't decide who my estate should go to

4

4

4

More than half of respondents (52%) don't know when they will get around to writing a will.

The AA's new legal offering presents a cost-effective solution to a range of everyday legal issues such as writing a will. The offering uses a range of easy-to-use legal forms and templates which have been prepared by solicitors. The cost is just £25 to download a form, which is completed online. Customers can even carry out a free trial in advance. The process can be either a document only, or it can be managed by a lawyer (where the form is checked and advice offered for an additional fixed fee). The service is free to AA Home Insurance customers who have included Home Legal Expenses with their policy.

The new AA Legal Documents service includes the following topics:

  • wills
  • building work
  • credit, debit & ID theft
  • probate
  • buying & selling
  • divorce affidavits
  • power of attorney
  • complaints & disputes
  • landlord & tenant agreements
  • prenuptials
  • work disputes

AA Legal Documents is provided by Cogent Law. Cogent Law is a trading name of Parabis Law LLP.

* Populus received 18,251 responses to its online poll of AA members between 15 and 23 October. Populus is a member of the British Polling Council.