Interest in will-drafting doubled since Covid-19, says UAE lawyer

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Dubai - 'The common concern for all is the unpredictability of the current situation.'


Karen Ann Monsy

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Published: Fri 15 May 2020, 3:42 AM

Last updated: Fri 15 May 2020, 9:44 AM

The number of people looking to draw up wills has risen dramatically since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, according to UAE lawyers.

Muhammad Tariq, partner at Legal Inz, said the volume of enquiries alone had gone up by 200 per cent at his firm, while those who actually went through with drafting their wills had seen a 100 per cent increase.

"The common concern for all is the unpredictability of the current situation," said Tariq.

"People above 40 years are the ones seriously considering estate planning. However, we're seeing a lot more inquiries from those in the younger age bracket."

He attributed part of the increased demand to their discounted rates for healthcare workers, but added that they did not anticipate things to turn "so sharply".

Nita Maru, managing partner at TWS Legal Consultants, confirmed she had seen a 40 per cent spike in interest since March.

"Expats are looking for certainty and peace of mind during these turbulent times," she explained.

"Writing a will gives them the security they are looking for in knowing that their assets and family will be protected in the worst-case scenario. This extraordinary and unpredictable experience has triggered expats into reflecting on whether their own affairs are in order. Legacy planning has become an urgent priority for all."

Meanwhile, technology has been playing a vital role in helping law firms keep up with the surge in demand - especially as DIFC wills can be registered virtually since March 22, either by virtual registration or via video conferencing.

"We have been able to effectively accommodate our clients' needs with virtual meetings and the smooth registration of wills online, making the process simple and convenient for all," said Nita.

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