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Call on Public to Make a Will – banks, consumers and solicitors join forces

Less than half of all adults have made a will
Only 1 in 5 intend to make a will in next 12 months
Research undertaken by Amárach Research for the Irish Banking Federation (IBF) indicates that only 45% of all adults have made a will; and among those who have not made a will, only 21% intend to do so in the next 12 months.

When asked to provide the rationale for not doing so, almost three-quarters said they “Don’t see the need for one yet” or “I am too young to consider making a will”.

Involving in-depth interviews with 810 adults throughout Ireland, aged 25-65, the research formed part of the recently-published IBF Personal Asset Profile which shows also that, while 9 out of 10 consumers are savers/investors, 1 out of 3 do not regularly review the performance of their investment and 1 out of 5 have nothing in place as a potential source of retirement.

Furthermore, the research shows that nearly 2 out of every 3 adults (61%) do not maintain a list or schedule of the assets that they own – a key step in making a will.

Commenting on the findings, IBF’s Chief Executive, Pat Farrell, stated: “It is important that consumers do more to promote their own financial interests. We saw in other parts of this research that most consumers are not regularly monitoring the performance of the savings/investments they hold today; or with regard to pensions for example, that many consumers are not properly planning for their retirement needs. Now we see from the research that they need to exercise more direct involvement in deciding what should happen to their assets after they themselves can no longer benefit from them.”

Dermott Jewell, Chief Executive of the Consumers’ Association of Ireland, added: “For Irish consumers property-based wealth alone has made the issue of drawing up wills more urgent than ever and it places a greater onus on us. Why? Because legacies can be contentious at the best of times and having a will simplifies matters for those you leave behind. The costs should not be excessive and can be invaluable when offset by the benefit of exercising personal planned choice and control in your affairs – to the specific benefit of those you would wish and while also likely reducing their tax liabilities.”

The Law Society’s Director General, Ken Murphy, had this to say: “Everyone who has both property and loved ones should have a will. The reality of the human condition cannot be denied. Do you want your property ultimately to be distributed in accordance with your wishes or a forty-year-old statute? Arrange to see a solicitor today. Make a will. It won’t kill you!”

The full results can be viewed at as part of the IBF Personal Asset Profile.

Note to Journalists: Irish Banking Federation (IBF) is the leading representative body for the banking and financial services sector in Ireland, representing over 70 member institutions and associates, including licensed domestic and foreign banks and institutions operating in the financial marketplace here.

Further Information: Felix O’Regan, Head of PR and Public Affairs, IBF, tel. 6715311, 087 6481644

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