Over 10 percent of people in the UK do not know how to get a will despite 90 percent of the population considering it important, according to new research by chartered accountants Perrys.
Furthermore, a fifth of the 1,000 respondents do not believe they have enough assets to justify having a will, while one in six people felt they were too young to have one: Two percent of these were in the 65 years and over age group.
The survey, conducted to raise awareness of the important of having an up-to-date will, showed that of the 42 percent that have a will in place, the majority were men. In addition, people living in East Midlands and Scotland were most likely to have a will.
It also showed that nine percent of those questioned thought it was too expensive to get a will, despite one in ten of these earning £40,000 per annum or more, which is nearly twice the average annual UK wage.
Meanwhile, other results highlighted that half would consider getting a will if they could benefit from free, professional advice at home, with only a quarter wanting to discuss their will by telephone. A third would prefer to be contacted at their place of work.
Chief executive at Perrys, Stewart Pope, commented: “There still isn’t enough emphasis on the importance of having a Will in place whatever your age, income or assets.
“A will should be seen as an insurance policy and can save you a lot of heartache in the long-term should something unexpected happen. This is particularly important if you have children or live together, but aren’t married. Even if you are married there are still grey areas as to who will inherit your belongings.”
Mr Pope added: “Not only does a will legally determine the allocation of any assets you may have, but it will also clarify personal requests such as who will care for your children in the event of both parents’ deaths.
“A will can also help inheritance tax payments to be planned more efficiently and help to avoid costly and lengthy disputes amongst family members.”
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