• December 5, 2023
 Estate Planning Software – what is it and is it worth the investment?

Estate Planning Software – what is it and is it worth the investment?

What is Estate Planning Software?

Estate planning software is highly specialised software that is used by Private Client Solicitors and professional Will Writers to automate the administration involved in preparing Wills, Trusts, Powers of Attorney and more.

How does Estate Planning Software Work?

Estate planning software follows a sensible step-by-step process, utilising a questionnaire style format. Data is entered once and, depending on the information provided, the system automatically updates areas of the document you’re creating.

It’s a Cloud based solution, which means it can be accessed from anywhere at any time and uses the latest security protocols. It’s often used to create a Will pack containing a selection of the following documents:

  1. Wills
  2. Discretionary Trusts
  3. Testamentary Trusts
  4. Powers of Attorney
  5. Severance of Joint Tenancy
  6. Advance Decisions
  7. Letters of Wishes

A built-in, editable precedent bank and the software itself are monitored by a Legal Advisory Board, supporting best practice efforts. The ability to brand and style documents helps drive consistency across not only wording, but also look and feel.

Is it Worth the Investment?

Estate planning software is relatively cheap, and users can typically get a return on investment from the savings in billable hours that the software provides.

For example, if you draft 50 Wills per month, 50% of which are simple (and therefore take less time to draft). And assuming you pay your drafters roughly £35,000 per annum, you could save roughly 31 hours per month (that’s almost 4 days a month) on administrative work.

There’s a calculator available so you can work out your personalised figures here.


But it’s not just the financial benefits and time savings that make it worth the investment. It also drives consistency, supports a cleaner peer review process, and enhances collaboration, it empowers junior lawyers to work more independently and removes boring tasks from employee workloads. It also helps to turn documents around faster, keeping clients happy and engaged in the process.

It also digitises your estate planning department, meaning you can integrate your estate planning software with your case management software and other solutions. Which creates further process efficiencies and offers better document control.

So, if you want to grow your department for a small investment or indeed try and reduce costs, estate planning software can help you achieve your goals.

Common Pitfalls to Watch Out For

When choosing your estate planning software, it’s often worth looking at the capability of the software, question if it can handle complex cases and the level of distribution it can go to. Consider a complex case you resolved recently, could it help you administer the documents for that case?

Look to see if they have an ‘API’ too. This means you’ll have more flexibility when it comes to integrating your estate planning software with other systems you might use across your offices.Two people on laptops using estate planning software

It’s also worth keeping a look out for hidden fees, some providers charge for updates, training, and access to support teams. It’s a good idea to get a good understanding of the services available and if they cost extra.

Compliance is worth considering too, not just legal, but also security. It’s a good idea to ask how the providers you’re comparing keep their software up to date with regards to legal best practice and security compliance.

Another area to be aware of is the software providers implementation experience. Do they have a robust implementation strategy and who will support you in rolling it out, will you have a point of contact at the company?

Implementation is often a worry for many taking on new software, as it takes time to onboard team members, which takes away from other business as usual priorities. Having a contact and working with a company that has a tried and tested roll out plan will help you deploy your new system as efficiently as possible.

Finally, don’t forget to review their reputation. You can often find case studies and testimonials on their website.

For more information about estate planning software and whether its right for you, visit our website.

This article was submitted to be published by Arken.legal as part of their advertising agreement with Today’s Wills and Probate. The views expressed in this article are those of the submitter and not those of Today’s Wills and Probate.



  Transforming the global estate planning industry through advanced technology Arken.legal provides expert digital solutions for the private client and estate planning industry. Its solutions deliver business efficiencies and consistency across a practice, while enabling client acquisition through an improved customer experience. Built by private client solicitors, Arken.legal products are used by more than 500 firms including Legal practices, Accountancy practices, Will writers and Legal services businesses in the UK, as well as Trust companies in South Africa, Australia and New Zealand. With 29 years' experience and more than 6 million Wills having been created using its products, today Arken.legal is a software as a service business offering secure, cloud-based solutions. The Arken Product Suite Businesses are turning to technology to enable change, increase efficiency and futureproof their incomes to suit upcoming generations and demand. The Arken product suite is designed for just this – to maximise productivity, provide interactivity and lead generation, and manage risk. It can suit any business process – whether instructions are taken virtually, in an office, remotely or via telephone. For increased efficiency, reduced re-keying and a delighted client, book a demonstration today to find out how we can help your practice. Key Services Arken Professional: A comprehensive, up-to-date and secure document generation solution built specifically for the Private Client Sector. Built by lawyers, its industry-leading software has produced over 6 million Wills. Arken Professional is the only software solution specialising in Wills that is accredited by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales (ICAEW). All the products on this scheme have satisfied a robust technical evaluation and are from companies that are financially sound and offer strong customer support, giving you that extra peace of mind. Arken Intestacy: The new way to increase leads and grow your business remotely.  A handy customisable tool for your website that demonstrates the circumstances if your prospective client were to die without a Will – they can then fill in their details and ask for you to help protect their estate. Arken Online Wills: A secure, online Will service. Will packs – which include a client’s Will, a Will commentary, and signing instructions – can be sent to the client immediately or reviewed before delivery. Arken Acquire: A digital fact find and lead generation tool. A tool that captures data from your clients, which is then used in the drafting of key estate planning documents. Simply email a link to your client and they can input key information that seamlessly flows into Arken Professional for drafting. Arken Lifetime: Create Inter Vivos Trusts in a fraction of the time. Trust Referencer: Get the latest on tax treatments and specific Trusts. Access the most up-to-date information to generate a personalised report for your clients, outlining the tax treatment that are relevant to both Testamentary and Inter Vivos Trusts. Arken Anywhere: The power of Arken on-the-move. Access an offline version of Arken Professional that will synchronise with your account once you’re back online. Arken API: A seamless transfer of data and reduction of re-keying. Details shared between your case management solution and Arken Professional.       Dave Newick, Chief Executive Officer of Arken.legal, said:
“We work in partnership with our clients to understand their key processes and provide the most efficient digital solutions for their Private Client business. The industry has begun its digitisation journey – it’s time to consider the best route within it for your business. Can you use technology to be more adaptable, more engaged, to provide a better customer experience? Can you use technology to automate low-level tasks, enabling you to focus on what really matters? It’s time to take the digital leap and benefit from the efficiencies it provides.”

          Testimonials Sophie Yates, Director, Fodens Solicitors Limited
“Arken is an absolutely fantastic tool. It is extremely easy to use and has helped our practices in Will drafting to a huge extent. I could not be without it now. I would recommend to any legal specialist looking to invest in Will writing software. Very cost effective too.”
Gemma Garen, Director of Quality and Compliance, Ellisons Solicitors
“We did a careful review of available solutions and chose Arken, as it has a very user-friendly and intuitive user experience, helped us with an improvement in our working practices, introduced time efficiencies and facilitated our ability to standardise our processes and mitigate our risks. The support team at Arken are excellent – very responsive and invested time to understand our needs. We had extensive support before and after going live. Arken is very easy to use, the templates are consistent and we have reliable support.”
Craig Webb, Head of Legal Operations, Brethertons LLP
“…Our staff have found Will drafting in Arken very easy to use and enjoy the questionnaire format which guides them through the process from beginning to end. It is very reassuring to know that our lawyers are all following the same process, producing Wills with a good level of consistency and that all clauses used are up to date. Preparing ‘mirror’ Wills is now particularly easy using Arken, and the systems’ intelligence to amend third person singular pronouns (he, she, his, hers), has eradicated these type of typographical mistakes. We have recently added Arken Acquire to our subscription and are looking forward to the further streamlining of our processes that this service can offer.”
Matthew Field, Director, SMR Solicitors
“We have found Arken to be a valuable tool for our private client team in terms of efficiency and consistency and we would highly recommend it to law firms looking for a professional solution.”
Eric Britt, Executive Consultant, Integrity Wills & Legal Services
"I have been using Arken Will writing software for a number of years, and have found it excellent, and easy to use. The support from the office has been exceptional whenever I have needed it, with a quick response and great patience at times. I would certainly recommend the software and also the company without any hesitation."
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