It is no good making a Will if it goes missing when it is needed. Hence your Will
needs to be kept safe and stored professionally - but you never need to pay regularly
for the service.
Storing a Will
Keeping a Will at home is never a good idea. All too easily it can be lost, stolen,
accidentally thrown away or destroyed in some way and then law assumes you have no
Will at all. It is the original document that is needed (not a copy) and even if
the original is not lost, it may become damaged causing the Probate Office to question
its validity later on.
In the past solicitors simply stored Wills in their office, sometimes in wooden document
holders just like this one. Whilst it might have stopped a Will simply being lost,
it was no protection against fire, damp or other problems.
Your local bank might store it for you for an annual charge, but if you move or change
banks it might not be found in the future. In any event, the bank might not let anyone
access your stored papers without a grant of Probate - but your executors cannot
get a grant of Probate without first getting hold of the papers - a real “catch 22”
That is why we recommend professional Will storage – somewhere where it will be kept
safe but also where it can be found and properly retrieved. At InHouse we can arrange
proper storage of your Will as a standard part of our current Will writing service,
with NO ongoing annual charges. Your Will is kept in fireproof storage under the
protection of a major national specialist company who currently look after more than
80,000 Wills. You are issued with certificates for yourself and your family. That
way your Will is kept safe (and private) until it is needed and your family know
exactly where to find it. The storage service currently includes access to free Probate
Helpline, to give advice to you or your Executors.
Alternatively, we can arrange for your Will to be stored at the Principal Probate
Registry (part of the High Court). A one-off charge of £30 per Will ensures that
when anyone applies for Probate your Will is found and cannot be ignored or ‘accidentally’
Unlike InHouse, many other firms make annual charges for the storage of Wills (currently
a local firm is charging £24 every year, or a one-off fee of £125). Some firms may
include Will storage as part of an expensive package of services, such as ‘pre-paid
probate’ which is rarely a good idea.
If you are paying regularly for storage of your Will, contact us today to talk about
how to save your money.