Celebrating 15 years of The National Free Wills Network

The National Free Wills Network is celebrating 15 years of helping charities and their supporters.

During this time, we’ve matched 75'000 people with a local law firm to have their Will written. These are often brand-new clients for the firm, who can then establish a new relationship, potentially sell extra services, and add to their Will bank. There’s also a fee for each Will written.

There are currently over 850 firms in the National Free Wills Network and we always welcome new additions, our aim is to offer charity supporters a participating solicitor as close as possible to their home. If you’d like to be part of this amazing service, please get in touch to sign up. It costs nothing to be part of the Network and it gives you the chance to help over 200 different charities with one point of contact. The Network's member charities range from large household names like RNLI, Guide Dogs and Marie Curie to beloved niche organisations like Bumblebee Conservation, Findhorn Foundation and Revitalise.

Three quarters of all the Wills written through the Network contain a gift to the sponsoring charity which means the service makes a real difference to the vital causes that take part. Nigel Gorvett, Head of Legacy and In Memory Giving at Marie Curie says “Last year, 1 in 4 of people cared for by Marie Curie was thanks to gifts in Wills, with many of these Wills being written by local solicitors through the National Free Wills Network. It’s a vital service and we are immensely thankful to all solicitors for supporting in this way – ensuring people are able to provide for their families and loved ones, whilst also considering a pledge that will help fund Marie Curie nursing services long into the future.”

The National Free Wills Network is a great way to show that your firm cares through positive exposure within your local audience. We asked Emily Littlehales owner and solicitor at Celtic Law Ltd why they decided to join the Network – “Being a new firm at the time I felt it was a good opportunity to both raise the profile of the firm locally and also to do our bit for the charities who support the service. It is amazing to receive the feedback about how much money Celtic Law has raised through the legacies in the Wills drafted.

The service also prompts the public to make Wills and enables them access to proper legal advice in doing so which is really valuable. There are so many people out there without Wills and they are so important to have.

Therefore – the reason was two fold, giving back to charity and to the community, but also as a marketing exercise.”

We also asked what benefits the firm had seen from their membership –and Emily replied “For us its been exposure! We are now in our 6th year and I still consider myself new.

I have also had various speaking opportunities as a result of my connection with the Network which has been amazing, this includes speaking at an event hosted online by the National Trust. As a small law firm in North Wales I felt this was quite an honour!

The scheme will fund a simple Will but more often than not, clients need something a little more complex. We don’t upsell to clients, but we do make sure they are aware of all of their options with the Will which from the firms point of view, means we can charge a top up – from the clients perspective they still receive a cheaper legal service through the scheme and they are happy! We also include Power of Attorney services in our discussion which is good work and part and parcel of making sure clients are aware of these documents. The scheme makes this all more affordable for them.

I would say that half, if not more, of the mirror Wills go with a trust. We have also had additional LPA work, probate work, and also some property transfer type work too.”

Being part of the National Free Wills Network boosts your profile, your reputation, attracts new clients and extra work, it presents the opportunity to make a lasting impact for some of the UKs best loved charities and all of this at no cost to you, in fact there’s a fee paid for each Will written. If you’d like to know more or join the almost 900 law firms already taking part, please get in touch with Faye Briggs [email protected] or 0345 686 4309

The full interview with Emily Littlehales of Celtic Law Ltd can be found here and other testimonials from Charities are available here.


Posted on 09.06.23