Apart from a general – and understandable – reluctance to think about death, many people put off writing a will because they don’t think they are wealthy enough to need one. But if you have a child or children under the age of 18 (16 in Scotland), making a will is the easiest way to ensure they are looked after by the people you want to raise them.
As many grieving families have found during the pandemic, dying without a will also makes life much more complicated for all your loved ones, as your estate goes through probate, which can take 12 months or more.
“For those who have lost relatives who had not made wills, the pandemic has opened their eyes to how difficult this makes things, especially for unmarried couples,” said Sarah Steel, director at financial education provider Better With Money.
Where there’s a will there’s a way
When it comes to providing financial education in the workplace, one of the main aims is to boost employees’ peace of mind – thus allowing them to concentrate fully on the task in hand.
Providing information, running webinars and offering one-on-one advice sessions related to will writing is a powerful way to do this, especially at the moment.
According to UK Wills, Trusts and Probate Market 2020 – Consumer Research Report by IRN Research, 67% of the people who have written wills since the onset of COVID-19 felt it gave them “peace of mind”.
There is also merit in educating employees about other aspects of planning for unforeseen circumstances.
“Only 10% of adults in the UK have set up powers of attorney – needed if they become unable to make financial decisions – even though the number of people with them has gone up a lot in the last year or so,” explains Steel.
Companies keen to prioritise financial wellbeing can even go a step further and offer access to a dedicated will writing service.
“At present I only have one client who offers a will writing service,” adds Steel. “But it would be brilliant to see more companies offering these services.”