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New research has found that women are more likely than men to make a will due to the pandemic.

The YouGov survey found that the Covid-19 pandemic made 28% of women more likely to write their will, compared with 19% of men.

The survey was carried out by YouGov in January, on behalf of the ‘heir hunting’ firm Finders International.

According to the research, 59% of UK adults do not have a valid will in place. For younger people, that proportion rises by 87% of under-35s. 29% of over-55s also reported not having a will in place.

The research found that 76% of adults surveyed did not know a lot about what happens to their assets if they die without a will, which is known as dying intestate.

42% of those surveyed reported having fallen out with family members, and a significant number said they would consider disinheriting family members from their will.

Danny Curran, founder of Finders International, said:

“It’s time our knowledge and understanding about our legacies when we die are better understood for the protection of our loved ones.

“We know the pandemic has forced many more individuals to consider their position around death – as awkward and as uncomfortable as that may sound.

“Not many people realise if they die ‘intestate’ or without a will, their assets could easily go to the Government. What we’ve learnt from this research is the importance of family relationships, or at least knowing who-is-who across a family, even if close relationships don’t exist.”

Mona Patel, consumer spokesperson at Royal London, said:

“The coronavirus has spurred adults in the UK to take action on their will as many people are finding themselves with more time at home to prioritise their personal finances.

“These figures echo Royal London research carried out last year, which show that the coronavirus and concerns for becoming ill were both prompts for people to update their will during the pandemic.”