• Posted

A lack of information, busy lives and a reluctance to think about death means parents of young children struggle to make plans for their children in the event of the worst happening. Unfortunately we regularly see the distressing results of lack of planning within families.

A recent survey by the Childhood Bereavement Network found that only one in four parents of young children have an up to date Will, yet almost three-quarters think it is important to have one.

The charity estimates that by the age of 16, one in twenty young people will have had a parent die.

A new national campaign – “Plan If”

“We wrote our Wills when our first child was born, and included guardians in case something happened to both of us. When he died, leaving two children under 5, I was so glad he made that such a priority.”

The Childhood Bereavement Network has created a dedicated website to help parents prepare their own Plan If. This comprehensive, user-friendly resource has simple steps parents can follow, with manageable actions they can carry out.

The Plan If campaign encourages ALL parents to put in place the practical and personal things that would make a difference to their children and families if they were to die while their children were still young. These are things such as Wills, plans for guardianship, insurance, family stories and letters for children to read in the future, providing comfort, stability and security at the toughest time.

In September 2014, a poll of 2,000 parents of children aged 0-17 was carried out for the Childhood Bereavement Network.

When it came to why parents had not made a Will

  • 37% said they hadn’t thought about it
  • 44% said they hadn’t got round to it, with one in ten saying they hadn’t had time
  • one in ten said they don’t know how to make one.

Other parents struggled to face the possibility of leaving their children prematurely; with almost one in ten saying they didn’t want to think about it, whilst 15% said they hoped such plans wouldn’t be needed.

Others stated financial reasons, with 14% believing making a Will is too expensive and almost one in five saying they don’t have enough to leave to people.

At Debenhams Ottaway, we are nationally-recognised for our expertise in advising on Wills and related matters. We are accredited by the Law Society under its Wills and Inheritance Quality Scheme, a quality mark for this type of work. We can also make Lasting Powers of Attorney for property and financial affairs and health and welfare. For busy parents, we offer later appointments on Wednesday evenings.

The contents of this article are intended for general information purposes only and shall not be deemed to be, or constitute legal advice. We cannot accept responsibility for any loss as a result of acts or omissions taken in respect of this article.