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Coronavirus – COVID-19: Whilst our offices remain closed, all our staff are working and our telephones are fully operational. We’re also offering meetings via video for advice on Wills, Lasting Power of Attorney or Probate and 'Drive In' appointments for Notorial services. As ever, please contact us if you have any queries. More >>

Adult Child Loses Inheritance Act Claim

Adult Child Loses Inheritance Act Claim

In recent years, Inheritance Act claims by those who feel they have been unfairly cut out of a Will have escalated. However, a recent “absolutely hopeless” case brought by an adult child, under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975, highlights how such litigation is uncertain, stressful and often costly. The Case –…

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Impact of Coronavirus on Your House Purchase or Sale

The Government’s announcement last month, freeing-up the restrictions imposed in March on buying or selling a house, has helped to lift spirits and slow down the rate of transactions collapsing. But what impact will the new Coronavirus regulations have on your house sale or purchase? Essentially, as long as social distancing guidelines are followed, and…

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The Role of Discretionary Trusts in Your Will

It’s not uncommon to set up a Discretionary Trust in your Will. This mechanism allows you to ringfence some or all of your Estate, often to support a loved one who is vulnerable or unable to manage their own affairs. Or safeguarding cash or assets for loved ones going through a divorce or a period…

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Lasting Powers of Attorney and Jointly Owned Property

We always advise clients to put a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) in place whilst they still have the mental capacity to do so. And, if figures released by the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) are anything to go by, people throughout the UK are convinced of the benefits. Over 800,000 LPAs were registered…

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Acting as an Attorney or Deputy During Coronavirus Outbreak

Acting safely as a Deputy or Attorney during the Coronavirus outbreak is concerning for many. However, outside the need to follow robust social distancing regime, shielding and self-isolating when necessary; the roles and responsibilities for Deputies and Attorneys remain the same. Responsibilities During the Coronavirus Outbreak  Working closely with the Ministry of Justice (MoJ), the…

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Trusts and Protecting Your Assets

We’ve written a few articles about the government’s planned increases in probate fees. A plan which, if implemented as intended, has been dubbed a ‘stealth tax’. Unsurprisingly, amid widespread condemnation, we’ve seen a marked increase in enquiries from clients about the potential benefits of setting up trusts. Can this approach mitigate inheritance tax liability and increased…

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Avoiding Family Disputes Over Your Will

There’s been a sharp increase in disputes over Wills in recent years. Last year alone saw a 60% increase of claims on estates by disappointed beneficiaries going through the courts. And, considering many cases settle out of court, the reality is that the increase is likely to be much higher. Some may think this rather defeats…

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Should We Sign the House Over to The Kids?

It’s a question we’re often asked. Should we sign over our house to the kids? Or put it into a trust? Whatever your circumstances are, your home is probably your biggest asset, so consider the implications of what you do carefully. Signing over your house isn’t risk-free. And there are plenty of misconceptions about the…

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Applying The ‘Golden Rule’ Matters When Making Your Will

The Importance of Assessing Testamentary Capacity For solicitors and Will writers, one of the most important parts of drawing up a Will is assessing a client’s ‘testamentary capacity’. If the client is elderly or ill or there are any doubts about their capacity, how a practitioner might determine this, is very important. Since the 70’s…

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Statutory Legacy Amount to Increase

The amount a surviving spouse or civil partner can inherit (when there isn’t a Will) is set to change. Known as the statutory legacy, the limit, which was set at £250,000 in 2014, will rise to £270,000 on 6 February 2020. Statutory Legacy Limit Increase The increase has broadly been welcomed by most professionals. Nonetheless,…

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Challenging Cost of Caring for the Elderly

The cost of care for the elderly isn’t far from the headlines these days. And it’s not without controversy either. Many of us may recognise the benefits of home care, but the cost of a commercial arrangement is beyond the reach of most. So, it’s likely that children or other family members will step into…

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Understanding The Process of Buying a House

Understanding the process of buying a house, especially for the first time, is far from easy. The whole process can seem over-lengthy and shrouded in legal jargon. So, if you can get your head around the basics of buying a house, you’re less likely to be taken by surprise. The whole buying process will become…

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What are the Benefits of a Personal Injury Trust?

A Personal Injury Trust works pretty much the same way as most trusts, in that the Trust is created to manage assets (money, investments, land or buildings) for people. But there are several tangible benefits to setting up a Personal Injury Trust for those who will need long-term care following a severe injury. The main…

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Planning ahead? Be smart about what you leave behind.

When you’re gone, you’ll want all your hard work to fully benefit your family and loved ones. But Inheritance Tax liability can reduce the size of the estate you are able to leave behind. Be smart and plan ahead. If your estate is worth more than the threshold for Inheritance Tax, there are things you…

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Being an Executor Carries Responsibility & Risk

Acting as an Executor is not a job to be taken lightly. Whilst it’s very gratifying to be asked, the role does carry a great deal of responsibility and in certain circumstances, significant risk. As Executor, you will have overall responsibility for dealing with the administration of the deceased person’s estate, as stipulated by law.…

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Benefits of Lasting Power of Attorney

The Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) has launched a targeted campaign aimed at educating the public about the benefits of making a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA). Prompted by recent OPG research and due to launch across the UK, the new campaign videos are focused on increasing the number of LPA registrations by promoting…

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Equity Release Still on the Rise

According to a recent study commissioned by LV= equity release is still on the rise. Figures just out report an increase of 77% increase in sales from equity release products. And the overall equity release market in the UK reached an all-time high of £3.9bn for 2018. Could be Mainstream in a Decade Furthermore, LV=’s…

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Probate Fee Increase Scrapped by Government

Dubbed the ‘stealth or death tax’ by many commentators, plans to increase probate fees up to a maximum of £6,000, have now been scrapped. Ministry of Justice Announcement Originally announced last November, Secretary of State for Justice, Robert Buckland, has now reversed the decision to change the current flat-fee structure in England and Wales to…

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The Importance of Making A Will

Whether for tax purposes or for a real desire to help a cause that matters to you, most of the UK’s population support leaving a legacy to charity in their Will, once their family has been provided for. But a startling 30 million of us have yet to make a Will in the first place.…

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The Benefits of Leaving Money to Charity

Making a Will is the only way to decide who benefits from you after your death. Naturally, making sure your family is looked after financially is an important consideration. However, there are benefits to leaving money to charity too. It means you’re not only supporting a worthy cause but your gift or legacy can also…

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