Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

Editor: Gerry W. Beyer
Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

Friday, January 15, 2021

Will writing: a case of whodunnit or haven’t done it yet?

WillsApparently, there is a link between detective fiction and personal finance. According to Claer Barrett, "a scuffle over a will is one of the most useful plot devices for the writers of detective fiction—and the bigger the inheritance, the better." 

Although most of us love a good whodunnit, as Claer put it, "when it comes to making our own wills, it's often a case of 'haven't done it'." 

An estimated more than half of UK adults either have not made a will, or have not updated it in awhile. Both circumstances can pose a serious problem with dramatic consequences.

Apparently, January is the time when many people begin to make a will or update an existing one. Claer jokes that Christmas TV schedules may be secretly nudging people to do so. However, it is more likely that people spending time with their families during the holidays is the real trigger. 

This Christmas was a bit different considering the pandemic as last year brought a surge in will writing as the world was faced to accept the realities of life and death. Also, writing and executing wills became a bit easier as video witnessing of wills became available. 

If you haven't written a will or haven't updated a preexisting will in awhile, you should consider taking the steps to do so, as the consequences for failing to do so can be life altering. 

See Claer Barrett, Will writing: a case of whodunnit or haven’t done it yet?, January 6, 2021. 

Special thanks to Joel C. Dobris (Professor of Law, UC Davis School of Law) for bringing this article to my attention.


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