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Staggering ’98% of Brits don’t know what a will is for’ – Macmillan

Paloma Kubiak
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Paloma Kubiak

Only two out of every 100 Brits can accurately describe what a will is for and why they need one.

A staggering 98% of Britons can’t say what a will is for, while millions of people have promised to leave something for their loved one after they die but have not updated their will.

The new research from Macmillan Cancer Support has found that while 68% of the 2,000 surveyed like to plan ahead and 49% are comfortable talking about their dying wishes, only 38% have actually discussed their own funeral arrangements.

Furthermore about 60% are actually putting off the important task and the top reasons given were that they’ve not had time to write one (41%), the belief they don’t have anything valuable to leave (26%) and that they don’t think they need to write one until they’re older (21%).

Macmillan research found that Brits believe the average age to make a will is 40, but over a third don’t know how much it will cost to draw up. See YourMoney.com’s DIY vs professional will writing: what you should consider for more information.

Nearly a quarter or Brits said that a celebrity’s death makes them think about their own mortality with the deaths of high profile celebrities, including David Bowie and Victoria Wood, making people think about their own death.

The charity is encouraging the nation to discuss their end of life wishes with loved ones, and urges people to move writing a will to the top of their to-do list to avoid heaping financial stress on to loved ones after they’ve gone.

Domino MacNaughton, legacy manager at Macmillan, said: “We want to encourage people to look to the future in a positive way and help educate them about a topic that is often misunderstood.”