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How safe is your Will?

How Safe is Your Will - BES Legal LTD

Last year, Lloyds Bank revealed that they found a significant number of documents in its ‘Safe Custody’ storage service, including around 9000 Wills. The storage facility was apparently closed to customers in 2011 but last year Lloyds Bank discovered thousands of papers were still stored there. Lloyds Banking Group failed to return the Wills of these deceased customers to their families, leading hundreds of them to distribute assets incorrectly.

Anyone who has applied for a Grant of Probate will know the application is made based on the deceased’s last Will. Therefore, this discovery could cause significant problems if an estate has already been administered and it transpires Lloyds Bank was holding a later Will.

The bank said that the estate was not affected in most cases because the Wills in storage had either been superseded or another copy had been stored elsewhere. However, it is estimated that in hundreds of cases, customers’ estates were incorrectly distributed. There is also the possibility, of course, that an estate has been administered on the basis the deceased died intestate (without a Will).

The situation that has arisen at Lloyds Bank demonstrates the importance that should be placed on the storage of Wills and being able to locate them on someone’s death. Placing Wills in a safe deposit box at a bank is not advisable as the bank cannot open it until they have sight of the Grant of Probate and the Grant of Probate cannot be obtained without the Will. It is important to tell your Executors where your Will is stored so they know where to locate it after your death.

Don’t leave anything to chance – get in touch with BES Legal Ltd today for further information regarding our Will writing service. Our team of expert solicitors can professionally draft your Will for you or aid you in reviewing your Will as it stands.

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The purpose of this blog is to provide information and discussion. Nothing on this blog should be relied upon as a substitute for legal advice from a qualified solicitor regarding any actual legal issue or dispute. Nothing on this website should be construed as legal advice or perceived as creating a solicitor-client relationship. Please note that we cannot give advice on individual’s situations or problems on this blog.