Almost 700,000 over-75s do not have a will – Just Group

More than one in 10 people (12%) over the age of 75, a figure equating to around 695,000 people, have not yet made a will, new research has found.

A study by Just Group also found that more than a fifth of people (22%) aged between 65 and 74, or 1.5 million people, are also yet to make a will.

In total, over 2 million retirees aged over 65 currently have no will in place and are risking how their estate would be shared up being left to the rules of intestacy.

Just Group also stated that Power of Attorney arrangements are much less common than wills with seven in 10 over-75s yet to have put these in place, equivalent to more than four million people. Among those aged between 65 and 74, Just Group revealed that more than five million people had not put a Power of Attorney in place.

The findings, based on a study among 1,043 people, also showed that three in 10 (30%) retirees aged 65 and above who are yet to arrange a Power of Attorney said they did not feel they were at the right stage of life to do so, and retaining control over their finances emerged as another key reason for not putting a Power of Attorney in place.

Furthermore, a quarter (24%) said they did not want to relinquish power over their finances, a sentiment that was even stronger (35%) among those over the age of 75.

Group communications director at Just Group, Stephen Lowe, commented: “The message about the importance of wills seems to be getting through with most retirees aged over 65 having one. But the importance and value of a Power of Attorney seems to be much less accepted.

“These are not easy conversations to have with loved ones, but broaching the subject and putting plans in place can make things clearer and considerably easier to manage at a very stressful and difficult time.

“At its simplest a will ensures that your estate is shared out as you would wish, not according to the rules of intestacy, and there can be financial benefits to planning in advance how and when to pass on inheritances.”

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