LSSA - Legal Software Suppliers Associations

Register your clients’ Wills for free during Free Will Registration Month

Throughout May, law firms can register their clients’ Wills on The National Will Register for free. So far in May, The National Will Register have received a number of enquiries from law firms and members of the public who wish to take advantage of this incentive and there is still time for your firm to do so as well!

Since the launch of the campaign on Tuesday 4th May, The National Will Register have been promoting free Will Registration to law firms as well as to members of the public. There has been an increase in members of the public visiting the website to register their Will. Law firms who are a member of The National Will Register are listed on the website to assist members of the public to locate a solicitor in their local area should they wish to review their Will or write one for the first time. We have recently been featured in The Mail on Sunday which has prompted the public to review their Will and use The National Will Register to find a solicitor in their local area.

Vicky Box, The National Will Register comments: “The National Will Register’s annual Free Will Registration Month is going really well. We have been inundated by members of the public and law firms who wish to contribute to the campaign. Overall, there has been an 88% increase in Will Registrations in the last six months in comparison to previous years. It’s fantastic to see such a positive response and as a team, we are here to assist everybody who wishes to take advantage of the incentive until Friday 4th June.”

It is a natural assumption that because a Will has been written, it will be found upon death but this is not always the case. In 2020, 20% of Will searches that were conducted resulted in an unknown or later Will being located following a Certainty Will Search. Will Registration ensures that a testators last Will can be easily located following their death so that it can be repatriated with the named executors and beneficiaries in the Will.

In a survey conducted by The National Will Register, members of the public were asked their reasons for conducting a Certainty Will Search. In the survey, 29% of individuals were searching for a Will that they did not think existed but as a PR wanted to safeguard their position by searching. The Certainty Will Search located 11% of Wills for these 29% of individuals. Additionally, it revealed that 24% of the searchers held a Will but as an Executor, wanted to ensure that a later Will did not exist before distributing the estate. Of these 24% of searches, later Wills were found for 6%.

Further reasons for searching included: searchers knowing that a Will existed but did not know where or who it was drafted by (19% of searchers), and those looking for a Will who were unhappy as they believed the Will is being used to distribute the estate would be superseded by a new Will (12% of searchers).

Will Registration has ensured that law firms who register their Will Bank with The National Will Register receive more probate work. Firms that are members of The National Will Register have the ability to re-engage with their clients to review their existing Wills via TOUCH Will Management system. Therefore, reigniting and retaining clients by inciting clients to keep their Wills up-to-date and written with your firm.

The highest reported amount of additional probate work received, due to Wills being registered by a single firm, was 86 probates in a year. The firm stated that if their Wills had not been registered, then they would not have won the probate work (in the majority of cases, they would not have known their clients had died!)

By registering their Wills, your client understands the repercussions of what could happen should their Will go missing in the future. It also means that they are aware of the distress it can cause their beneficiaries and executors, making them want to make sure that their Will can be easily and quickly located after they have died to avoid such situations. Will Registration ensures that their Will is better protected in the future.

When a person writes a Will they do so because they understand the importance of documenting their wishes and protecting their assets for their beneficiaries. Millions of testators have registered their Wills because they also want to protect and ensure that in the future, their executors and beneficiaries can find the Will and that the law firm that wrote and stores the original can make contact with them. They want their Will to be repatriated with the executors quickly and easily and without the emotional turmoil that can arise from a family having to hunt through personal effects in an attempt to find the last Will.

This month until Friday 4th June, you can register your clients’ Wills that were made prior to May 2021 and your existing Will Bank for free on The National Will Register. To express your interest and to begin registering your clients’ Wills, call 0330 100 3660 or email enquiries@certainty.co.uk.