Testamentary Capacity Assessments

What is a Testamentary Capacity Assessment?
Testamentary Capacity assessments are used to ascertain if a person has the capacity to make a Will.

What is included in the testamentary capacity assessment?
Our testamentary capacity assessments include one visit to the client’s home, an assessment, a written report that can be kept alongside your Will, travel and reading time. Our assessors can also act as one witness to the Will (at no additional cost), providing the Will is present and capacity is confirmed.

What case law do you use?
Testamentary capacity is not covered by the Mental Capacity Act (2005) and so requires another legal test known as Banks v Goodfellow. This case law is our benchmark for the testamentary capacity assessment and is included in all the accompanying reports.

What information do you need from me?
We will request information such as a family tree, the size of their estate and whether they have any dependants. This information is used to verify what the client says during the mental capacity assessment, assist in developing the questions asked and to ensure all that we have discussed decisions being made in sufficient depth.

If you have a copy of your Will it is helpful to provide us with it prior to the assessment or have it present on the day.

Contact us and we will provide you with a copy of our bespoke referral form, which we will happily talk through with you.

What happens in the assessment?
 The assessment will take place at the client’s home or a location they feel comfortable and will comprise of an in-depth conversation. It is not a test, the assessor will use the information provided before the assessment to engage in open questions surrounding the Will, the person’s estate and their family and friends. If a Will is present, they will also go through its contents and if a Will is not present they will discuss the individuals wishes for their Will.

Why is a testamentary capacity assessment necessary?
If there is question over someone’s capacity or there could be seen to be doubt then a capacity assessment can help ensure that the person creating or changing their Will is doing so with understanding and without duress.

It can be used to ensure the client continues to have a voice and that they have an opportunity to express their wishes in a safe environment with no outside influence.

To discuss arranging a testamentary capacity assessment with TSF please contact us.