Tilly Bailey & Irvine: Avoid ‘rogue’ Will writers

Will writing.
Will writing.

When your personal affairs are of discussion, you need a solicitor with the right respect and reputation behind them. Tilly Bailey & Irvine Law Firm has heard stories from some that are not so ...

Will writing is an unregulated business and there are rogue firms out there. The company should be signed up to an industry trade body, such as the Society of Will Writers or the Institute of Professional Will Writers.

However, this does not mean there will not be problems.

Some Will writers leave you to sign your own Wills and have them witnessed.

Rogue Cases

I have seen cases elsewhere where Will Writers have made Lasting Powers of Attorney for a client but these have not been registered with the Office of the Public Guardian.

If there is any technical defect with the document, this may not be discovered until it is too late. I have also seen cases where clients have not signed the Lasting Powers of Attorney, so they are not valid.

A Will writing firm based in Nottingham recently went into administration causing concern for clients who had been referred to them by their bank.

The Will Writers were holding documents and clients experienced a difficulty in obtaining them from storage. In one case, they had also been appointed as Trustees.

The fees charged are not always as reasonable as may be initially indicated, particularly for ‘add on services’.

Surely, it is better to instruct your local solicitor in your high street who has a duty to look after any documents they hold for you.

If the firm ceases to practice then the items will be passed on to another firm, or if a firm was not succeeded by another practice then any documents are held by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, so they remain safe.

Tilly Bailey & Irvine LLP are accredited under the Law Society’s Wills and Inheritance Quality Scheme Accreditation (WIQS) – A Best Practice Quality Mark for Wills and Estate Administration advice that consumers can trust.

Unsure of how to start with your will? Our specialist probate solicitors in Hartlepool, Stockton, Wynyard and Barnard Castle can offer impartial, honest and caring advice on all aspects of Wills, Tax Planning, Care, Estates and Powers of Attorney.