The Co-op’s Will writing service was highlighted in The Independent and the Mail on Sunday over the weekend. Co-op Legal Services has seen a 30% increase in new Wills customers, and is attracting a younger demographic, since starting its online Will writing service.
The news articles looked at how Co-op provides its online Wills service which is followed up by a phone call from a professional Will writer, where customers can ask questions and receive guidance.
Customers have described Co-op’s online service as both straight-forward and convenient. It is also empowering more people to start making a Will (about 50% of UK adults don’t have one). The added convenience of being able to speak with a Will writer up till 8pm on weekdays suits many of Co-op’s new customers.
Co-op’s fixed cost Wills were instrumental in encouraging Linda and Chris Bridgeman to bring their Wills up to date. The Bristol-based couple who are 67 and 70 originally put Wills in place while they were in their fifties. These Wills had fallen out of date following the arrival of 3 grandchildren (with another on the way) and a house move. They had been meaning to update their Wills for a long time but had been put off by expensive quotes.
Linda and Chris’ daughter recommended Co-op’s online Will writing service to them, so earlier this year they decided to make use of this service to draw up their new Wills. They filled in their details online, finding the online service easy to understand. They then arranged a call with one of the Co-op’s experienced Will writers, who discussed their requirements and finished drafting the Wills for them.
The draft Wills were posted to the Bridgemans to be checked over. Once they were happy with their Wills, the final versions were sent to them for signing. Linda and Chris’ Wills are now being stored by the Co-op for free for the rest of their lives.
Linda said “We put off sorting our Wills for such a long time because we thought it would be costly and time-consuming. But we now wish we had done it earlier.”
Currently 31 million people* in the UK potentially face dying without a valid Will in place. This means that they lose control over who would inherit all their belongings, and if they are not survived by certain relatives then everything they own would go to the Crown.
Furthermore, if someone dies leaving young children behind then, if there isn’t anyone with the legal authority to look after them and they haven’t already legally appointed a guardian, the authorities may ultimately decide who should take custody of their children. The appointment of a guardian is something you can do in your Will for peace of mind.
Head of Co-op Wills, Solicitor James Antoniou, has overseen the growth of the Wills business and worked alongside the Co-op’s Digital team to design and implement the online service. James said, “We wanted to tackle the challenges that were preventing people from getting a Will in place. That’s why we’ve used digital technology to help make it as convenient and straightforward as possible to have a professionally drafted Will, while still providing a comprehensive, personalised, fixed fee service which caters to individual needs”.
*As reported in The Independent