Before the pandemic, less than half of UK adults had made a Will. This has since risen during COVID-19, with a rise in enquiries concerning making a Will of 75% since the start of the pandemic. The Financial Times reported in March that some law firms saw enquiries double in the first few weeks of lockdown.
This is no surprise as the worry of losing a loved one has been at the front of many minds during the pandemic. Many people may have also thought about making sure they care for their loved ones should something happen to them. Thus leading more people to think about making a Will.
Making A Will During the Pandemic
We reported back in August that video Will practices have now been made legal. This is a temporary measure until January 2022. This refers to the fact that it is now legal to have a witnessing of a Will made by video, by two witnesses. The video will witness news comes amidst an effort to limit the necessity of in-person witnessing of wills due to social distancing precautions. The temporary measures include any Will written from 31st January 2020
There are certain rules to this temporary amendment of the law. These rules include:
- Making sure the audio and video are both clear
- Ensuring that the witnesses can actually see them signing the Will
- There must be a clear line of sight of the Will
- Treat this option as a last resort
There are also some exclusions from the temporary change. You can find out more information about the temporary rules here.
Rise in Gifts Left to Charity in Wills
Not only has their been a rise in people making a Will, more people have been donating to charity in their Wills. This could be thanks, in part, to people like Captain Sir Tom Moore, who raised over £33 million for the NHS during the first lockdown. People wanting to remember a charity that means a lot to them could be another contributing factor.
We have written previously about leaving gifts to charity in Wills, and, with many charities having to pause or stop their work due to lockdown or restrictions, they may now need donations more than ever.
There are statistics that state that, during lockdown, the amount of money left in Wills as legacy donations surged to £35 million. This is compared to around £4 million previously. This is a positive step, as charities rely heavily on legacy donations to continue the work that they do.
How We Can Help
Ultimately, people want to make sure that they care for their loved ones after they die. This is the main reason that many people choose to make a Will. Here at The Inheritance Experts, we work with solicitors who have years of experience dealing with all manner of enquiries. This includes enquiries about Wills. Contact us today by filling in our contact form, or by calling us on 01614138763 to speak to one of our friendly, knowledgeable advisors.