New resources to help charities choose a Will-writing partner

26 April 2019

Today we have published free resources on our website to help charities choose a suitable Will-writing partner.

Charities are increasingly pairing up with Will-writers to help their supporters gain access to specialist and legal advice and to promote their cause to a wider audience, particularly those who are currently planning what will happen to their estate.

While working with a good Will-writing partner can help to raise a charity’s profile and encourage legacy donations, there is a broad range of Will-writing services on the market. It is important that charities and the public can determine how those services differ and what level of legal expertise is provided. A Will that lacks rigour can mean that assets may not be allocated as intended and is more likely to be disputed.

Rob Cope, director of Remember A Charity, says: “With Will-writing options changing rapidly, especially in the online market, we are seeing growing opportunities for charities to reach out to new audiences. However, with such a diverse range of providers on offer, and an as-yet unregulated Will-writing marketplace, it is imperative that charities choose who they work with carefully.

“This advice helps charities identify the questions they need to ask when making that choice in order to form a proper assessment of potential partners, identifying what service will be the best fit for their needs.”

To help charities assess both the opportunities and the risks to make the right choice for their needs and those of their supporters, we have developed a brief guide and checklist for selecting a Will-writing partner and a directory of some of the most well-known Will-writing firms.

Before choosing a Will-writing partner, charities are encouraged to consider how the Will-writing service is delivered and regulated, whether the provider has the expertise to handle complex estates and at what level qualified legal professionals are involved in the process. Additional questions include asking what steps the providers are taking to ensure that clients have mental capacity to make a Will and how they guard against undue influence of others.

The resources have been developed with support from the Institute of Legacy Management. Matthew Lagden, CEO of the Institute of Legacy Management, adds: “With contested Wills having risen significantly since 2016, it is becoming ever more important that charities offering Will-writing services work with a suitable partner to provide a service that protects both supporters and estate beneficiaries as well as themselves, and reduces the risk of dispute. These resources from Remember A Charity will help charities make informed choices and form strong partnerships that enable them to do just that.”

For more information see Choosing the right Will-writing partner.