Keeping Your Will Safe
A common query among interviewers of minor talent runs something like: ‘What is the most interesting thing you’ve encountered in your working life?’.
Questioners be they journalists or personnel officers, who trot out this shop-worn enquiry should be taken out and birched. So, by this we come to the question of where to store your will safely.
Anyway, someone asked me the easiest question: ‘What’s the most challenging case of your career?’. I reframed the question so I could answer it with interest and no overstatement. Challenge implies intellectual, even professional endurance. So, I reframed the question as: ‘what’s the most maddening case you ever encountered?’
The most maddening case ever I encountered was one of missing documents, more precisely, a case of missing deeds to the property that was the principal asset of a deceased – the case was no intellectual challenge, but it took lots of time and money to make good – to the frustration of all involved especially the beneficiaries and the neighbours of the adjoining properties.
Where to Store Your Will
Missing house deeds, it might as well have been a case of a missing will. We thus arrive at the question: Where to store your will?
First, Where Not to Store Your Will
In the first, do not ask your bank to store anything, banks lose things. I speak from personal experience. Do not ask your bank to store anything more valuable than used fish and chip wrappers.
Secondly, don’t keep your will in a safety deposit box. If your will is in the box, the bank couldn’t open the box without a grant of probate. The executor couldn’t get a grant of probate without the will. Don’t trust your bank with keep your will, it won’t be safe.
Another Place I’d Not Recommend to Keep Your Will
Dicken wrote about the inadequacies of storing wills at the probate service of what is now the HM Courts & Tribunals Service. Say no more.
What I Tell All…
This is what I tell all my clients: ‘this is what I tell all my clients, let the important people know there’s a will, let them what’s in it, let them know where to find it.‘
Storage in your home is a tricky proposition. It has the advantage of being cheap. But, watch not to put it in a safe… a safe to which only you have the key. Further, it’s not been unknown for a beneficiary unhappy with a will to destroy it, and either produce another or simply rely on the rules of intestacy.
The Perfect Place to Store Your Will
Many say the perfect place to store your will is with the draughtsman who prepared the document, but first to check the costs.
And the good news is that I offer a free storage service. I’m insured, should there be a fire. There we go.