Ashby de la Zouch

01530 639 031

Tamworth

01827 758 041

Interview: Wills and Probate with Janki Raikundalia

Janki Raikundalia discusses the change in Wills and Probate and her advice and predictions for what the future may look like.

 

How have you seen the wills and probate department change over the last 12 months?

 

Most of our meetings prior to Covid-19 were conducted in person, to take initial instructions and to also sign clients paperwork. There has been a key difference in the way that we have had to adapt to work to introduce virtual appointments to take instructions and send out paperwork to clients to sign with instructions. The signing of Wills has also been challenging for many, with social distancing rules. Virtual witnessing of Wills has also been introduced to make the Will signing process possible in circumstances where clients have been unable to have physical witnesses.

 

How has technology helped the way you interact with clients?

 

A lot of our client appointments are now carried out via Zoom or telephone. This allows clients the flexibility to choose whether they wish to come into the office or conduct their meetings in the comfort of their own homes. Technology ensures that we can provide a service no matter where our clients are located as they do not need to come into the office to have their legal work completed.

 

How have social distancing rules impacted the way you deal with elderly and vulnerable clients?

 

Many elderly clients unfortunately still do not feel comfortable leaving their homes so we offer Zoom appointments so they are kept safe.

 

What are replacement attorneys and what powers do they have over powers of attorney?

 

Attorneys are the chosen persons to assist with ones affairs. Replacement Attorney’s only step in to act in the event that one or more of the Attorney’s cannot act.

 

What are your predictions for your department over the next three years?

 

There are many changes that may come about including potential tax changes, potential online signing of Wills, more probate applications may be done online as opposed to paper form, Lasting Powers of Attorney may also be signed online. Virtual Will witnessing may come to an end. The law around Wills automatically being revoked upon marriage is currently under review and there may be a change in decision/law regarding this.

 

Why are using solicitors for wills, probate and trusts important for your clients?

 

It is important to use a Solicitor to assist with ones affairs as a Solicitor is legally trained to advise and consider all matters that someone may not be able to easily identify. A solicitor can ensure that everything is done correctly and in line with the law whilst always acting in the clients best interest.

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