Registering your clients’ Wills on The National Will Register protects the testator, executors and beneficiaries by ensuring that a Will can be located upon death.
Mander Hadley, a law firm based in Coventry and Kenilworth, have been members of The National Will Register since 2014. The firm recognise the importance of registering their clients’ Wills on The National Will Register and have incorporated it into their Will writing process.
In a survey conducted by The National Will Register, 22% of law firms ‘Will Bank’ clients, on average, ask to rewrite or review their Wills when provided with the option of free Will Registration. Following this statistic, the firm have also recently been engaging with existing clients to consider updating or rewriting their Will and have offered free Will Registration as part of this package.
The National Will Register recently spoke to David Webb, Head of Wills, Probate and Older Client Services at Mander Hadley about the firm’s thoughts on Will Registration and Certainty Will Search. David discussed the benefits that both bring to the firm and their client offering.
David comments: “Virtually everyone to whom we explain about The National Will Register is very happy to allow the details of their Will to be registered, because there is no disadvantage in doing so and access to this facility is a reason to use our Will preparation services as opposed to the firm next door. It is added value.”
“From our perspective the registration process is fast and slick; we have found it user friendly. However, above all else, using Certainty Will Search is pretty much essential in probate work if you are serious about risk management. Failing to conduct a Certainty Will Search where one should be made when dealing with an estate could very easily amount to negligence.”
“For example, to distribute an estate on the basis of a revoked Will, or on an incorrect assumption of an intestacy, can have far reaching consequences. Aside from insurance and financial considerations, and all the worry and stress which goes with it, a reputation which might have taken decades to construct will be destroyed in a single moment when a decision is made not to undertake a Will search. It is best to err on the side of caution and to make a search if in any doubt at all. The impact on the affected family of getting this wrong doesn’t even bear thinking about. A Certainty Will Search is something which ought to be at least considered every time a file is opened.”
“The National Will Register also provides an opportunity to reconnect with your existing client base. An offer of free registration of their Will on The National Will Register provides a reason to write to your existing clients, and from that springs the possibility of new work in terms of Wills reviews and preparation of LPAs. It reminds the client of who and where we are and that we are the family solicitors. It tells our clients that we don’t only prepare Wills but we provide many other services they may need. The vast majority of new instructions come from existing clients and any opportunity to be in touch with them is a positive.”