Why don’t 59% of islanders under 50 have a Will?

At Babbé, we take Wills seriously. As we have helped islanders place a deceased relative’s affairs in order, we found that a startling number of people have themselves never written a Will. It seems that many do not know the importance of having a Will, nor how straightforward setting one up can be. We carried out a survey to find out more.

The results were noteworthy. We found that 59% of younger islanders, those aged between 18 and 50, had not made a Will. Over 100 people took the survey, which resulted in 51% stating they do not have a Will, despite 86% stating that they consider it important to set one up.

Some of the perceived barriers cited by respondents to creating a Will included cost, thinking they are too young to need one, lack of understanding of how to set one up, and not having enough time. Many of the people surveyed who do have a Will stated that it was only put in place when they purchased their first home. We took this data and compiled it into an insightful report.

Our team have been able to address many common misconceptions about Wills for our clients, such as assumptions about automatic family inheritance and a lack of understanding about the costs of intestacy rules. However, we’ve also noted that our report highlights a common desire to have information about Wills included in lessons or consultations at school to help educate islanders about the importance of Wills from a young age.

Andrew Laws, Senior Partner at Babbé LLP, said: “It is clear that Wills are not widely talked about among younger people, and some have said that they felt too young to think about having one.

“Wills are incredibly important, no matter what age you are, as they ensure that your wishes are fulfilled in the event of your death. As the pandemic has shown, life is full of uncertainties, but a Will is something that can help bring assurance during the most difficult of times.

To learn more about setting up a Will in Guernsey, view our Wills Guide or contact our Wills Team team for advice.

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