Lost a will?

Boohoo
Boohoo Forumite Posts: 1,024
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Hi.

My dad made a new will 5 years ago.

My sister and myself have spent 3 days looking for the will in his home as he mentioned to us that he can't find it.

We have found the draft will from his solicitor and the invoices for the work done but not the original will.

He picked up the will from the solicitor's when he paid them and took it home.

His solicitor is no longer practicing and the firm's dealing were transfered to another firm. This firm has now been closed down by the SRA i think as he told a mate about the will and his mate used the new firm and only found out that they had closed.

Is there a way of finding out if there is a copy of the will somewhere that can be used when he dies or will he have to make a new will?

He is not sure if the will he got from the soilicitor is the original 1 off of they kept a copy and gave him the one that he has losy/misplaced.
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  • user1977
    user1977 Forumite Posts: 11,766
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    edited 24 June at 9:50AM
    If it's possible the solicitor kept the Will, has anybody checked with the firm who took over? They'll almost certainly have taken over the Will bank, they won't have been chucked in the shredder.

    Otherwise it's probably going to be easier if he makes a new one, assuming he's still able to.
  • Boohoo
    Boohoo Forumite Posts: 1,024
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    Thanks for your reply.

    As in my OP the solicitor's closed down and the one that took over was closed down by the SRA for something dodgy so i may have to check with SRA to see what firm has taken over.

    My dad is ok to make a new will and myself and over siblings know what was in the will as he told us all and we have also seen the old draft will.
  • poppystar
    poppystar Forumite Posts: 1,134
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    Don’t risk only having a copy when the time comes, it will just cause you a headache and drag out the whole probate process. To be honest I’d suggest to him he makes a new Will now but if you do decide to try and trace the old one I would give yourselves a clear time span and if it hasn’t surfaced by then do a new one. Yes, there will be a cost but if he can afford it it will make life easier.
  • bobster2
    bobster2 Forumite Posts: 271
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    It might be in the SRA archive. Can request a search here...

    https://www.sra.org.uk/consumers/problems/claim-papers/
  • SkyyeBlue
    SkyyeBlue Forumite Posts: 25
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    We had very similar circumstances, we had a copy will but not the original. After following a trail of solicitors and SRA closing down the final company, we sent a form off to the SRA and the original had been taken to Coventry from North Yorkshire. Original was returned within 3 weeks (they give themselves a lot longer, if I remember rightly they said allow 60 days).
  • Mojisola
    Mojisola Forumite Posts: 35,456
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    Boohoo said:
    My dad made a new will 5 years ago.

    My sister and myself have spent 3 days looking for the will in his home as he mentioned to us that he can't find it.

    We have found the draft will from his solicitor and the invoices for the work done but not the original will.

    He picked up the will from the solicitor's when he paid them and took it home.
    If everything in the will is going to stay the same, why not type it out (extremely carefully and get a couple of different people to proof-read it), print it off, get it signed and witnessed properly and then store it with the Probate Service so it doesn't get lost again.
  • BooJewels
    BooJewels Forumite Posts: 2,489
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    I was going to suggest the same @Mojisola then wondered if it was a daft idea.  I wrote a post, then deleted it.

    The signature would need to be independently witnessed and it would need to say that it revokes all previous wills.

    But having seen 2 family wills recently that have been proved through Probate (one in April) that had all sorts of issues - I couldn't see any reason why not, as long as the details still meet his requirements. 
  • Boohoo
    Boohoo Forumite Posts: 1,024
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    Thank you all for the replies and advice.

    The new will will be the same as the missing one.


  • RAS
    RAS Forumite Posts: 31,934
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    If you choose to type it up it is essential no- one adds or subtracts any punctuation, as that my alter the meaning.

    Also start by changing the font and size and printing, then get someone who doesn't know the material to proof-read. Watch for spell-checks.

    One organisation I knew lost a lot of money because someone mis-spelt public. 
    The person who has not made a mistake, has made nothing
  • JGB1955
    JGB1955 Forumite Posts: 3,331
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    edited 25 June at 4:45PM
    RAS said:
    If you choose to type it up it is essential no- one adds or subtracts any punctuation, as that my alter the meaning.

    Also start by changing the font and size and printing, then get someone who doesn't know the material to proof-read. Watch for spell-checks.

    One organisation I knew lost a lot of money because someone mis-spelt public. 
    examples above... not a criticism, just an observation that it's essential to get things checked and double-checked when a will is involved.
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