Demand for wills up 76% as coronavirus concern ‘focuses minds’

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Coronavirus has prompted a 76% jump in the demand for wills in the last two weeks, driven by people’s “minds being more focused” on certain aspects of financial planning due to the COVID-19 pandemic, says the CEO of a leading advisory firm.

The sharp surge in enquiries comes as deVere Group launched a free online wills service for clients and is offering a discount to UK citizens when drawing up their will – now at a cost of only £15.

“Like too many aspects of financial planning, including retirement planning, drawing up a will is not something that most people rush to do,” said deVere’s founder and chief executive Nigel Green.

“It remains ‘on the back burner’ until something, such as an illness or a change of circumstances, focuses minds.

“With frightening death tolls and confirmed cases, with more people than ever bravely risking their own health to help others, and with more people with more time on their hands due to social distancing measures and lockdowns, the coronavirus pandemic has had an unprecedented, collective focusing-of-minds effect.”

Green added that, “in these highly unusual and worrying times, we should all be playing our part.”

The deVere Group launched a free online wills service for clients and reduced the fee to just £15 to non-clients for a month. The company also said it is absorbing the costs, except the storage in an insured facility, in order to encourage even more people to create a will.

“Pandemic or no pandemic, the importance of having a will cannot be underestimated – and they’re not just for the elderly,” Green said.

He explained that circumstances can change for anyone at any time and for so many different reasons as this pandemic is, unfortunately, proving to be all too true.

“Having a will gives you the peace of mind of knowing that the rewards of your life’s work – both financial and sentimental value – will be handled according to your wishes,” the deVere CEO added.

“You’ll be helping your loved ones avoid going through the burden of unnecessary stress, legal hurdles and potential tax issues during a time of grief. It can help them retain the quality of life you have created together.”

“We can expect the uptick in demand for wills to continue throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, which has triggered a growing number of people to get their affairs in order,” Green concluded.

“However, a will should always play a part in any successful financial planning strategy.”