The Covid-19 crisis has made the witnessing of Wills challenging, particularly for people who fall into a high-risk category and those who need to ensure social distancing.
The Government have recently announced that it will be introducing temporary legislation to enable people to use a video link to witness the signing of Wills virtually, where witnessing in person is not feasible. Under current rules, the witness must be physically present.
- The new law is expected to come into force in September this year;
- Shall apply for Wills executed up until 31 January 2022;
- It is set to be made retrospective. Therefore, it will apply to anyone whose Will has been executed in this way since 31 January 2020.
As the new legislation has not yet been drafted, its scope and operation are currently unclear. We advise anyone planning to arrange the remote witnessing of a Will before September to exercise extreme caution. Obtaining professional advice is key to ensuring the validity of the Will and reducing the risk of intervention from the courts at the same time.
All of the points above (and many others) are covered in our Private Client Review, which is free for TC clients and their family members during the period of COVID-19 restrictions.
If you haven’t already, please contact our Private Client Team at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 0330 088 7111 to arrange your free consultation.