22 October 2020

  • Co-op Legal Services reveals the top ten unique gifts left in wills, including a stuffed bird and a collection of bottles
  • Almost three fifths (57%) of people intend to have a will in place before they die and over a third (33%) expect to receive an inheritance
  • The legal services provider saw will enquiries increase 69% year on year during the UK lockdown

While UK adults generally put a monetary value on their expected inheritance, it’s not just property and cash that’s accounted for in a will. According to Co-op’s legal experts, some of the most unusual items left in wills include personal collectibles, royalties and even fashion items.

Top 10 unique items left in wills according to Co-op’s Will Writing Team

  1. A can and bottle collection
  2. A stuffed bird
  3. A 1927 Austin Seven
  4. A pinstriped shirt
  5. Poetry royalties
  6. A Carlsberg pub mirror
  7. Cash for petrol
  8. A deceased pet’s ashes
  9. Auto-focussing binoculars
  10. Music and management royalties

The list has been released alongside research conducted by Co-op Legal Services* which reveals almost three fifths (57%) of people intend to leave a will. However, despite this, many still leave future proofing until later in life, with almost two-fifths (39%) of 55-59 year olds admitting they have no plans in place.

Four in ten (40%) believe their spouse will inherit at least some of what they do have. Over two fifths (43%) of those who do not have a will think their assets will go to their children, while a sixth (16%) believe other relatives will inherit some of it.

However as one in three marriages now end in a divorce and blended families continue to rise, it’s more important than ever before to capture these wishes in a will to avoid costly disputes further down the line.

James Antoniou, Head of Wills for Co-op Legal Services said: “Our most treasured possessions can be a reflection of who we are and so it’s only natural that people want to ensure they will be taken care of in the way they want, at the time of their passing.

It’s really encouraging that so many people have taken steps to legally document their final wishes in a will in recent months. However, it’s worrying that many people are leaving to chance what will happen to their estate when they’re no longer here.

Without a valid will in place, people will lose control over what happens to their estates and the law instead decides how it’s distributed.”

Media Contacts:

For further information Maya Powell maya.powell@coop.co.uk M: 07773096851

Notes to Editors For further information about Co-op Legal Services, please visit: https://www.co-oplegalservices.co.uk/about-us/

*Burying Wishes report, conducted by YouGov and commissioned by Co-op