Focus SWW Autumn 2016 - Page 6

Who is your Will Writer? Are they trained? The simple fact is that anyone can write a Will? This means that you can do it yourself… Would you want to? No, it can cause all sorts of problems and expenses. There are so many important considerations that need to be made and quite often only someone who is professionally trained will be able to advise effectively. Here at the Society of Will Writers we recommend using a professional to draft your Will or other associated legal documents. When we use the term professional we want to be very specific. There are a lot of Will Writing firms out there. We would only recommend using a firm or individual who chooses to adopt a form of regulation or self-regulation as this would afford you added protection. Solicitors are regulated by 4 the Solicitors Regulation Authority, in the same way, Will writers can choose to become members of the Society of Will Writers. Our responsibility is to check that those who apply are ‘safe to do business with’. We don’t just accept anyone. We ensure that the professional applying for membership has professional indemnity insurance, will adhere to our Code of Practice and continues to develop their knowledge on a regular basis. Without these basics the products or services they are providing would offer very little assurance of quality or security. In the event that something goes wrong or you aren’t happy with the service provided there is an accountability process. SWW members must have a complaints procedure in The Society of Will Writers place and must aim to resolve any complaints themselves in the first instance. If they are unable to resolve a complaint then the SWW may get involved and the complaint may then be escalated to our independent complaints administration team We keep records on our members. This means that even if they cease trading then we will be able to provide information on where the documents they produced may be stored or what to do if amendments were necessary. If the individual was unregulated this safeguard may not be available. In our profession there are often changes in legislation which alter how someone will advise on an estate plan. SWW members have the support and knowledge from our technical advisers. Our board of advisers keep us updated about the implications of forthcoming legislation and this is communicated through our membership. This means that the advice that our members provide is up to date and in line with current legislation. There is no guarantee that an unregulated professional will provide up to date advice that perfectly suits your circumstances.