In the summer of 2013, the Association of Corporate Council (ACC) became concerned that WIQS (the Wills and Insurance Quality Assurance Scheme) might not be the best choice for will writing for its clients. It is a somewhat complicated process. Thus ACC’s professional body, STEP (The Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners) was brought on board to help inform the public of their role vis-à-vis those preparing their Wills.
STEP had already informed its members about a new STEP, seven-page Code for Will Preparation in England and Wales due to take effect on 1 April 2014. It is very easy to understand, outlining the ethical principles and standards of behavior STEP members should follow. In addition, if a solicitor tries to take advantage of a client in this way, the client can complain to STEP which will use its disciplinary process where necessary.
Some of the challenges that may arise with this and other finance-related matters, were discussed last year by Marnin Michaels, Partner at Baker & McKenzie, Zurich, who spoke at the STEP conference. He gave particular mention to how fast the world is evolving, which means that financial advice given now may be outdated next month! To overcome this, Michaels believes the key is “constant study, reading and learning.”
By doing this, and by trying to keep abreast of fluctuations in the world of finance, those at STEP can help enhance the financial management needs of their clients.