Local solicitors have issued a warning following media reports that people fearing the effects of coronavirus are downloading Will forms from the internet and getting them signed on car bonnets.
“Failing to sign a Will correctly can result in it later being declared invalid”, warns Victoria Wilson, a partner with Shropshire and North Wales law firm, GHP Legal. “And Wills must be signed in front of two witnesses who are physically present, even during the current coronavirus pandemic.”
The warning comes after it was reported that people were finding unusual ways to get Will forms they had downloaded witnessed during social distancing, including placing them under the wipers of car windscreens!
“A properly drawn up and witnessed Will is the only way to be absolutely certain that your wishes will be carried out after you die,” says Ms Wilson. “It has long been a known fact that DIY Wills risk being illegal and therefore invalid. So, I would urge anyone who is wanting to write a Will to seek professional advice and steer clear of online Will templates.
“Even in the current situation of social distancing, law firms such as ourselves are still taking instructions via telephone appointments and are still able to draft a Will that can then be emailed or posted. Once it has been approved, the top copy needs to be signed by the person making the Will, in the presence of two independent witnesses who must be present at the same time and see the signing. And there is no reason why anyone should not be able to comply with those requirements.”