Lloyds Banking Group has discovered hundreds of Wills within their archives that they did not know they had. Revealed by the Financial Times, the mistake has left Lloyds hurrying to re-unite around 9,000 families with their loved one’s Wills.
The fact of the Wills not coming to light until now may mean that families could be faced with the fact that money and other assets were gifted to the wrong people! Lloyds have confirmed however that the number of customers impacted is in the low hundreds.
In the majority of cases the Wills had been overridden by newer versions, and other copies had been stored in a different location – or were dealt with through the intestacy process and followed the testator’s final wishes anyway.
Lloyds Bank has promised that anyone who suffered detriment from the lost Wills will be fully compensated and those who may have wrongly received money and assets will not be asked to return it.
Rebecca Head of Four Oaks Legal Services said “Historically banks were a trusted place to leave original documents, however, branch closures and changes to the services banks provide mean this is no longer the best place to leave the documents. It may be a better method to leave your original Will with your Solicitor and to notify your Executors and family where the original is held. It can also be helpful to consider registering your Will with Certainty, the National Wills Database, so that if your family forget what you have told them, there is a formal record of where your Will is held”.