Covid-19: Why having a Will in place is so important

Covid-19: Why having a Will in place is so important

On 5th March 2020 the first death from Covid-19 in the UK was confirmed. At that date just over 100 cases had been recorded and the Prime Minister thought the outbreak would cause the country "a substantial period of disruption."

One year later and in the past 12 months over 125,000 people in the UK have died from a disease that none of us had heard of at the start of 2020 and which has now killed over 2.6 million people globally.

Statistics show that approximately 60% of people in the UK don't have a Will: that's 75,000 of those people. Applying those statistics, 75,000 people who died in the last 12 months in the UK from Covid-19 died without a Will: 75,000 people!

75,000 people not only left families distraught and upset through their untimely deaths but who then compounded that grief by the family discovering that person had not made a Will, causing unnecessary stress and upset at a time they needed it least.

One of the most responsible and straightforward matters that we can do is to have a Will in place; an up-to-date document which is properly drafted by a Solicitor and can easily be located on death.

Losing a loved one is stressful and upsetting, particularly if this death was unexpected. If you die without a Will your family will need to get legal advice and dealing with matters is usually more costly and complex. A Will is the only legal way to specify what you want to happen to your child if you die before they are 18. A Will is especially important for parents with young children to appoint a legal guardian. A Will is the only way to leave assets to your partner and your partner's children if you are unmarried; unmarried partners or "common-law" spouses receive nothing if you die without a Will.

If you die without a Will the law decides who gets what according to a set of rules -

Throughout the ongoing restrictions of Covid-19 it has been possible to prepare a Will; we have met clients in car-parks, outside windows, in their own homes and remotely via Zoom, Teams, WhatsApp and Facetime. Meeting clients remotely has become the 'new norm' as we've responded to the challenges of this pandemic and delivered exceptional service.

The coronavirus pandemic, more than any other event in our recent history, has forced us to re-evaluate our lives: it has killed people, forced people to lose their livelihoods, restricted our freedoms and controlled our lives; it has not and cannot stop us putting our legal affairs in order and this is something we wholeheartedly advocate and the Government recommend also -

With one of the largest Wills, Trusts and Probate departments in Norfolk, we have a reputation for providing the local community with an extensive range of private client services. Click here for more information on the Will Writing service we offer.

To discuss your circumstances in further detail, contact us on 01603 693500 or email us using 'Make an enquiry' online form on our website. Appointments are available at our Norwich, North Walsham, and Sheringham offices.

*This article is provided for general information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or other professional advice.