Ben Furlong, Customer Services Director, Estatesearch confirms: “Conducting a Will search means that reasonable steps have been taken to identify any later or missing Will and helps ensure the testator’s wishes are carried out correctly. It’s generally understood that only around half of UK adults have made a Will, but interestingly, in our own research conducted in earlier this year, we found that 20% of those that have a Will have later updated it with a different provider. Looking at population statistics, this could mean that there’s potentially nearly 7 million Wills out there which are out of date, highlighting the importance of finding the latest version.
“Feedback from our legal customers found they were looking for a Will Search which offered greater flexibility, more robust searching criteria and better cost efficiency. In response we have now developed a Will Search which aims to meet the recommendations made in section 19.1 of the Probate Practitioners Handbook (Missing Wills) and 23.3.1 of the Law Society Wills and Inheritance Quality Scheme (WIQS).
Estatesearch’s new Will Search makes enquiries across local and national will holders including local solicitors and Will writing members of the Institute of Professional Willwriters (IPW) and the Society of Will Writers (SWW). It also includes a search of the Probate Depository and a number of online will providers. Crucially, Estatesearch takes into account that the average person moves house up to eight times during their lifetime, and searches on providers near all connected addresses supplied with no maximum limit. All potential Will holders of whom enquires are made are detailed in the report, providing an clear audit trail of due diligence.
The search can be ordered directly through Estatesearch’s free, secure, online portal alongside a full range of products designed to support private client practitioners.
Ben Furlong continues: “We aim to support clients in probate matters to make the process as smooth as possible so in addition to our new Will Search, we also offer a range of additional services including Asset and Liability searches, Trustee Notices, Overseas & UK Bankruptcy Searches, Unoccupied Property Insurance, Early Distribution Insurance and Share Valuations. With no registration or subscription fees, our customers simply pay for the disbursements they need, when they need them.”