Newcastle Building Society customers will now be able to access broader later-life planning provided by Co-op.
Newcastle Building Society already offers its 373,000 customers access to Co-op’s market leading funeral plans. However, the new agreement will incorporate advice on Estate Planning and Trusts, in addition to offering Wills, and guidance on how to prepare a Lasting Power of Attorney.*
Customers will be able to access the advice through one of Newcastle Building Society’s 27 branches across the North East. Co-op advisors will meet customers in a Newcastle Building Society branch or visit customers at home.
Currently in the UK, 45% of adults do not have a Will,** meaning loved ones may not automatically inherit an estate. The administration of the deceased’s estate would be governed by the law, under what is known as the Rules of Intestacy and an ‘Administrator’ will be appointed to carry out the role instead.
Stuart Miller, customer director at Newcastle Building Society, said, “Despite many other banks closing branches, we’re fully committed to an ongoing presence on the high street and to providing accessible, face-to-face financial advice. We’re pleased to be able to extend our current partnership with Co-op, as a member-owned and community-focused organisation, Co-op shares our values and is a great fit to deliver these important services to help close the later life planning gap.”
Jonathan Appleby, head of corporate partnerships at Co-op Legal Services and Life Planning explains, “Often people put off later life planning because it can appear too complicated, but as a business we are always looking for opportunities to make later-life planning more accessible to customers who have a genuine need. By expanding our partnership with Newcastle Building Society we will be able to help even more people to put plans in place to protect themselves and their families now and throughout the later stages of their life, ensuring their wishes are taken care of when they are gone.”
Co-op has recently launched the biggest ever survey into death, dying and bereavement as it seeks to lead the way in tackling the taboo around this subject. Supported by a number of national charities linked to death and later life, Co-op is aiming to reach tens of thousands of people across the UK. It will gather opinions from consumers, funeral directors, charities and Co-op members – asking them to give their views on death, bereavement and funeral wishes via coop.co.uk/survey. The survey will be conducted by YouGov.
*Fixed fee Wills start from £125 +VAT (£150) for a standard Single Will, fixed fee standard Mirror Wills start from £195 +VAT (£234) and a fixed fee Lasting Power of Attorney starts from £225 +VAT (£270).
About Co-op Legal Services and Estate Planning
The service will be provided by Co-op Estate Planning, an unregulated business providing later-life planning advice. Co-op acquired Sheffield-based Collective Legal Solutions Group Limited, a provider of Wills, Trust and Probate services, in 2016. Legal documentation is prepared by Co-op Legal Services, regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.
**Research conducted by Atomik among 2,000 UK adults on behalf of Co-op in 2017