SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwired - Apr 8, 2014) - A Last Will is essential for legally protecting loved ones and important assets when the unthinkable happens, but new data reveals that a majority of Americans (64 percent) do not have a Will. Over half (55 percent) of Americans with children do not have a Will, which could unintentionally be placing their children's future at risk. Rocket Lawyer, the fastest-growing online legal service, is supporting Make-A-Will Month in April to raise awareness of estate planning's importance and is empowering individuals to create a free Will any time during the month.
A majority of Americans (57 percent) reported they do not have a Will because "they just haven't gotten around to making one." Additionally, almost a quarter (22 percent) believe making a Will is not urgent and almost a fifth (17 percent) do not have a Will because they don't think they need one. Rocket Lawyer is removing the burden, both financially and emotionally, out of drafting a Will by making the process simple and affordable.
"Lots of busy people know they should create an estate plan, but many don't for a variety of reasons. Many procrastinate, with the misunderstanding that a Will only distributes monetary assets, but, a Will can and usually should cover more than that," said Charley Moore, founder and CEO of Rocket Lawyer. "Drafting a Will also enables people to specify their final wishes, take care of loved ones, protect assets (physical and digital) and prevent family disputes. With Make-A-Will Month, Rocket Lawyer is driving awareness of this issue and making it simple for anyone to create a Last Will. We are providing people with an easy, affordable option to ensure that they are legally prepared for the unknown."
Control the Complications: Unexpected Provisions to Reduce Legal Woes
Throughout life, many prioritize the security and well-being of their loved ones. However, it also is important for Americans to ensure that their family and friends are not faced with inconvenient legal complications during bereavement. To avoid lengthy courtroom battles and excessive inheritance taxes, one-third of survey respondents prefer to include a Revocable Living Trust in their Will. Additional desired provisions include a No Contest Clause (25 percent) to ensure their Will is executed appropriately and Pet Provisions (19 percent) to protect their furry friends. A number of people even wish to solidify a desired residence or travel location(s) for their beneficiaries (11 percent).
Where There's a Will, There's a Way
Regardless of what type of estate plan you choose and the provisions you decide to include, it is always recommended to consult an attorney -- especially for those who have dependents, or tangible assets such as real estate or a business that, if not protected, could be subject to steep taxes and government interference. However, for the those who have put off estate planning because they don't have a lawyer (17 percent) or think it costs too much (14 percent), Rocket Lawyer can solve both issues by offering free Will creation and access to qualified attorneys at significantly discounted prices though the On Call® network.
"My mother's passion to make lives better and her purpose driven pursuit to partner with innovative companies and sustainable entrepreneurs within the beauty industry started in 1980, when being a woman entrepreneur was not very common. What began as a beauty shop in San Francisco's lower Pacific Heights district has now grown into a locally based, global beauty consulting business and boutique salon, spanning three generations of clients," said Dudley Burns IV, son and Director of Business Development for Ms. Sarah's Creations of Beauty. "While my mother still shows no sign of stopping, I knew we needed to do some succession planning so my mother's wishes for her business is maintained. We used Rocket Lawyer for her Will along with other necessary solutions in an ever evolving industry to keep the business relevant and legally sound. Today, our team successfully provides uncommon leadership and unrivaled industry knowledge in operating businesses, licensees, education and life coaching for future and current professionals locally, domestically and internationally."
Additional key findings from Rocket Lawyer's Make-A-Will Month survey include:
- 90% of Americans aged 18-34 do not have a Will
- 80% of Americans aged 35-44 do not have a Will
- 91% of students do not have a Will
- 51% of married Americans with children do not have a Will
- 83% of single Americans with children do not have a Will
- 75% of Americans believe the most important digital asset to protect in the case of their death is online banking and financial accounts; 33% of Americans believe email accounts are the most important
- 14% percent of Americans do not have a Will because they don't want to think about death
- 9% of Americans would protect their social media accounts in the event of their death
About Rocket Lawyer™
At Rocket Lawyer, we believe everyone deserves easy and affordable legal services. Since 2008 we've helped over 20 million families and small businesses take care of their legal matters -- so they can focus on what really matters. From free legal documents and business incorporation to discounted rates with outstanding attorneys, we're there to help every step of the way. For more information on Rocket Lawyer, please visit http://www.rocketlawyer.com and follow Rocket Lawyer on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.
This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Poll on behalf of Rocket Lawyer from March 28-April 1, 2014 among 2,048 adults ages 18 and older. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact Kristin Farrell: Kristin[at]highwire[dot]com.
About Nielsen & The Harris Poll
On February 3, 2014, Nielsen acquired Harris Interactive and The Harris Poll. Nielsen Holdings N.V. (