Shropshire will writing society chairman calls for more industry regulation
18th July 2013
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The Shropshire chairman of a will writing society today called for more action to regulate the industry despite a decision rejecting the move.

Terry Le Long, director of Telford and Shrewsbury based NLS Shropshire Will & Trust Services Ltd, said he was disappointed that Chris Grayling, the Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice, had turned down calls for more protection for consumers.

The Legal Services Board had recommended that the law be changed to make will writing a 'reserved activity' to provide extra safeguards after carrying out a two-year study.

But Grayling in his recommendation said that the evidence in the board report did not 'adequately demonstrate that reservation is the best solution, or that alternative measures have been sufficiently exhausted' in seeking to address disadvantages to consumers.

Mr Le Long said: "When I heard about the decision it was a real disappointment to me as I really believe something needs to be done about regulating the industry.

"I was recently re-elected as chairman of the Society of Will Writers for Shropshire, Staffordshire and Mid Wales and would urge campaigners to continue their calls for regulation despite this decision.

"Will writing is becoming more and more popular nowadays. However, there are hundreds of people out there offering a will writing service who have no qualifications or specific knowledge of the industry.

"This is of detriment to the consumer and if anything goes wrong gives a bad name to all those will writers who act in a proper and legal manner."

Mr Le Long urged people to make sure whoever they instructed to write their will had the correct knowledge and qualifications, and of course insurance in place in case anything went wrong. He said: "This is why the Society of Will Writers is so important. It is a non-profit-making, self-regulatory organisation which aims to protect the public as well as serving the interests of the professional's active in the field and its members follow a strict code of conduct.

"The society has stringent membership requirements and proficiency standards to make sure consumers are not losing out when employing a will writer.

"Members of the society will always be qualified, insured and adhere to code of conduct and complaint procedures in place. If they aren't members then there's a reason for that.

"I would urge anyone looking for a will writer to make sure they have those correct qualifications and insurances in place.

"I believe that anyone choosing a will writer who is a society member can be assured of a professional service from someone who has the interests of the consumer at heart.

"I hope there will be some regularity changes in the future regardless of this latest setback."

For more information on NLS Shropshire Will & Trust Services Ltd contact Mr Le Long and his team on (01952) 250360.

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