Fewer young people are making Wills in 2019
Posted on 31st July 2019
A recent survey showed that the average of age a person making a Will in the UK has risen to 57 in 2019.
This is despite attempts to encourage younger generations to include a Will as part of their plan for life.
What the figures tell us
A sample of over 10,000 people who have arranged their Will or lasting powers of attorney (LPA) using a solicitor or professional Will writer shows that people under the age of 55 are reluctant to think about taking steps to protect their interests and express wishes.
Surprisingly, in June 2018 a Which? Legal survey found the average age of someone making a Will was 47, so it seems that the age is increasing.
Adults under the age of 30 represent just 3.57% of all Wills; more people aged between 83 and 95 (3.8%) have made their Wills.
Last year’s Kings Court Trust research found that only a quarter of people under 35 have made a valid Will, even though major life events like marriage and starting a family are motivating factors to put your affairs in order.
Unemployed people are one of the groups least likely to make a Will - only 13% have done so.
Young people aren’t interested in creating an LPA to protect them and their interests if they lose their mental capacity. The average age of a person making an LPA is now over 66 for both property and financial LPAs and health and welfare LPAs.
Why young people should make a Will and have LPAs
The two main things young people are unaware of are:
• marriage revokes a Will in England
• unmarried partners are not entitled to each other’s assets.
Although more than half of adults who are married or in a civil partnership have a Will (58%), only 30% of cohabiting couples have one.
Do you need a Will?
If anyone over the age of 18 dies without a Will their estate will be dealt with according the law of intestacy. Often, their family will have to deal with their affairs and make decisions about their funeral arrangements. Close friends and family members might not receive gifts that they might have wished to give.
Many young people don’t think they have any assets to leave and aren’t aware that their Will can include their funeral wishes and gifts of possessions as well as money.
Over time assets can build up, including a car, hobby equipment and furniture. A Will can stay in place, with added codicils if you buy a property for example, until circumstances change, such as marriage or starting a family.
If you have children, it’s important to include guardianship arrangements in a Will to be sure that decisions aren’t taken out of your partner’s hands if you die. This can sometimes be a very distressing and complicated time.
Who you should choose to write your Will
18- and 30-year-olds are more likely to accidentally discover a solicitor or estate planner online than to look for a High Street legal practice.
The priority is to be sure that you work with someone who is properly qualified and regulated.
We are a member of the Society of Will Writers and recommend that you look on their website to find someone to write your Will.
Please get in touch if you would like any advice on preparing a Will – it’s never too late or too soon.
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