And, having witnessed at close hand how easy charlatans can infiltrate the sector, I feel it’s important that the findings Lord Hunt’s report are followed up by action.
Among the lengthy inquiry into solicitors’ regulation, the report said: “Fellow citizens would surely be taken aback to learn that anyone can currently set himself or herself up as a will-writer and also some aspects of probate activity can take place outside the regulatory net.”
Lord Hunt also said: “Simple mistakes can lead to unjust outcomes and those outcomes will often occur a long time after the will has been written.”
For every firm like mine which strives to offer an honest and personal service to its clients, there are a string of will writing companies which spring up with seemingly no track record or deep-rooted expertise in the sector.
This is perhaps a direct reaction to demand from a public which has, in recent years, become more aware of the need to write wills before hitting old age.
However, it is also indicates an industry which is in dire need of more governance to separate the genuine experts from the pretenders.
Aside from the excellent support available from the Society of Will Writers, the sector lacks the rigid regulatory framework of most other financial and legal fields.
This means that any solicitor who may have spent a few hours at law school reading the basics of will writing can try their hand at an art which is incredibly complex and takes years to perfect.
Solicitors often use their lofty standing to charge considerably more than mere will writers despite the fact that they may know a lot less than their fully-trained counterparts.
And then there are those will no legal background who are tempted into the practice for the chance to make significant amounts of money in a short space of time.
Of course, with adequate training and support people of any career background could theoretically become a will writer. But it is essential that they are trained by a reputable source - something which would be easier to distinguish with more corporate governance in the sector.
Hopefully Lord Hunt’s findings prove the catalyst for change and help create a system which separates the competent from the cowboys.