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Wills, Trusts & Probate Blog

HMRC's Trust Registration Service: Co-Ownership and Residuary Estate Trusts

Joe Pegler
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HMRC introduced their Trust Registration Service (TRS) in 2017. It originally applied to certain taxable trusts and required trustees to register details of these. However, the TRS has since been expanded to cover most trusts, whether or not the trustees...

Lasting Powers of Attorney

Amanda Voakes
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For many people, there unfortunately comes a time whereby they no longer have the mental capacity to handle their own affairs, whether due to old age, injury, or illness. To prepare for these potential circumstances, having a Lasting Power of Attorney in...

Inheritance Tax

Claire Clarke
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When contemplating their overall Inheritance Tax position, many people believe the current Inheritance Tax threshold is now £1 million.  It might therefore surprise some of you to learn that the basic Inheritance Tax nil rate band allowance is...

HMRC - TRUST REGISTRATION

Charlotte Corbyn
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HMRC introduced their Trust Registration Service (TRS) in 2017. It originally applied to certain taxable trusts and required trustees to register details of these. However, the TRS has since been expanded to cover most trusts, whether or not the trustees...

Emergency Power of Attorney: When and How to Obtain It

Amanda Voakes
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Accidents can happen to anyone at any time, and sometimes these accidents can result in individuals losing the ability to make their own decisions. In such cases, the Court of Protection in the UK steps in to protect the interests of these vulnerable...

Clear language is critical in will drafting

Amanda Voakes
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Three children have won a share of their father’s £700,000 estate after a hard-fought case that reached the High Court in London. The siblings took action when their father Kenneth Grizzle died and they found they were excluded from his...

Increase in Statutory Legacy

Samantha Furey
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As of 26 th July 2023 the Statutory Legacy upon intestacy is increasing to £322,000. The Statutory Legacy is a specific sum of money given to the surviving spouse or civil partner of the deceased, who has died without a valid Will and with children. ...

New Clarification from the Court of Protection about Lasting Powers of Attorney

Claire Clarke
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There has been a recent case relating to Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs) that emphasises the difficulties that can be involved with the drafting of these documents. The Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) is a government body that monitors the activities...

When inheritance plans start leaking

Samantha Furey
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With increasing rates of re-marriage and the resulting blended families, parents need to take action if they wish to protect inheritance for children from a previous relationship. Any fans of the mega-hit TV series Succession, which follows the fortunes of...

The Alzheimer's Dementia and Care Show 2023

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Friday 3 rd March saw the annual Alzheimer's Dementia and Care Show at the Business Design Centre in London take place. The show is the UK's dedicated exhibition and conference for Dementia and Care and features a wide range of care exhibitors,...

Don't Ignore a Will Trust

Charlotte Corbyn
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We often see clients come to us when the second of their parents pass away. On occasions, it transpires that a trust was established under the Will of the first parent to die. Often, either because of the mention of a surviving spouse within that trust, or...

2023... how to gift inheritance tax free

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The Law: Inheritance tax in relation to gifting circulates around the concept of Potential Exempt Transfers (PET for short). What we are referring to, is that any gift a person makes during their lifetime will be classed PET.  These gifts cover any...

HMRC Compliance - Trust Registration

Charlotte Corbyn
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HMRC introduced their 'Trust Registration Service' back in 2017, but since then there has been an expansion of which trusts are required to register. From September 2022, all 'express trusts' needed to be registered, even if there is no tax...

I am the Executor of an Estate and I would like to purchase Property from the Estate. Will I fall foul of the Self-Dealing Rule?

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It can be quite common for a lay Executor to wish to purchase property from an Estate particularly where that Executor is also a beneficiary. Most people don't realise that there is a rule that can prevent a transaction of that type from being valid. An...

The Autumn Statement - Key Points from an Inheritance and Tax Planning perspective

Claire Clarke
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1. Inheritance Tax (IHT) The Nil Rate Band and Residence Nil Rate Band, previously fixed until April 2026, will now be fixed until April 2028.  This is one of a number of 'stealth' taxes extended in this Statement.  The current Nil Rate...

Death Bed Gifts - a 'trick or treat'?

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Death bed gifts are a concept that many have heard of, but very few understand the dangers. In this article we will look at the pitfalls and how you can avoid the horrors that will come back to haunt your intended recipient. What is a death bed gift? A...

How good is your will writing professional?

Claire Clarke
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Consider the last time you instructed someone to prepare a will for you.  If it went something like this: They  asked you what you wanted to put in your will You told them what you wanted They produced a document accordingly. You did not...

Deadline dispensation but clock keeps ticking for trustees

Anna Howat
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Trustees who missed the September deadline to comply with the expanded scope of the Trust Registration regime have been thrown a lifeline by HMRC, with the news that penalties will not be imposed on those who missed the cut-off date through ignorance. ...

LASTING POWERS OF ATTORNEY - THE TIME TO ACT IS NOW...

Claire Clarke
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To appoint a person or persons to make decisions for you if you should lose mental capacity, you need to do so using a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA).  There are two types of LPA, one to appoint people to make decisions about your property and affairs,...

Estate Planning in the Digital Age - How are my digital assets dealt with on my death?

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Today, we undoubtedly live in a world full of digital "online" influence – online banking, social media, online shopping and even virtual meetings using platforms such as Microsoft Teams and Zoom. Certainly the global pandemic has moved us...

Power Of Attorney: Making your wishes clear

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If you are considering giving Power of Attorney to a loved one, we understand that this may feel overwhelming. There are many considerations, including choosing someone you trust to carry out your wishes and conduct your affairs as you would want. Choosing...

Business owners - make it your business to consider your Will

Claire Clarke
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As a Private Client solicitor with quite a few years' experience under my belt, I find that generally younger people put off making wills unless a particular event prompts them to do so.  I always advise everyone to make a will since it provides...

Whom should I appoint as my attorney?

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An attorney is appointed within a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) to assist the donor (person making the LPA) with their property and financial affairs and/or health and welfare. The attorney will make decisions on behalf of the donor, either once mental...

Chattertons Private Client team - New Partner Hire

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Chattertons Solicitors & Wealth Management are delighted to announce that Claire Clarke has joined the Private Client Team as a Partner at their Stamford Office. Claire is a solicitor and full member of the Society of Trusts and Estates Practitioners...

The Importance of Making a Will

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A Will is a legal document prepared to decide how you would like your estate, i.e. all of your assets including money, property and possessions, to be distributed after your death. If you do not have a valid Will at the date of your death your estate will...

Care fees and protecting your estate

Claire Clarke
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One of the most common misunderstandings that clients have about funding residential care... “If we sign our property over to our children, after seven years it cannot be used to fund residential care”. It is possible to make an outright gift...

How Does Marriage Affect your Will?

Claire Clarke
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With the lifting of Covid restrictions this year is likely to be a bumper one for weddings. Whilst couples enjoy planning their nuptials, they often overlook one of the most important considerations when entering a marriage – what will happen to their...

How has Covid-19 affected inheritance tax?

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There is still much uncertainty about the true impact of coronavirus on all aspects of our lives. Inheritance tax is no different, with the fallout of the pandemic affecting the value of estates, inheritance tax planning, and the valuation of business assets...

Vulnerable face timebomb by not appointing others to act

Amanda Voakes
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Professionals working with the elderly and vulnerable are raising concerns over future safeguarding following a dramatic fall in the number of lasting powers of attorneys registered during the coronavirus pandemic. Figures from the Office of the Public...

What is a Grant of representation and do I need one?

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To put it simply, a Grant of Representation is a legal document/order issued by the Probate Court, which proves an executor, or administrator has the legal authority to deal with the deceased's estate. Is there more than one type of Grant? Yes, there...

Talk Money Week: Talking to your family about your wishes for the future

Amanda Voakes
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Nobody likes to think about a time when they are no longer around and talking to loved ones about what you would like to happen after you pass away may seem morbid or unnecessary. However, talking about financial and practical matters can help put your mind...

Older people need better safeguards against predatory marriage

Amanda Voakes
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Legal issues involving predatory marriages have resurfaced in the news recently. Calls to change the law to better protect victims and their families are building momentum, spearheaded by Daphne Franks whose mother, Joan Blass, was a victim of a predatory...

A royal lesson in keeping things under your hat

Amanda Voakes
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A judicial decision has seen the late Duke of Edinburgh’s Will sealed for 90 years, and the value of the estate excluded from the grant of probate.  The ruling highlights an often-overlooked fact, which is that a Will, setting out how an...

Leaving gifts to charity in your will

Amanda Voakes
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The International Day of Charity is an annual event that took place on 5 September, but did you know that one of the best ways to support a charity is to leave them a gift in your Will? Many charities in the UK rely on donations left behind by their...

Gifting and inheritance tax: Explained

Amanda Voakes
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As part of inheritance tax planning, or simply as part of passing on wealth to the next generation, you may consider gifting money or property to family or friends. However, there are several things you need to know about gifting and inheritance tax. In this...

Can you make a Power of Attorney online?

Amanda Voakes
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It is possible to make a Power of Attorney online, but whether you should is an entirely different matter. The process of making a Power of Attorney seems straightforward, but for those who are unfamiliar with the process, there are many potential pitfalls...

COVID 19: Key changes to The Wills Act 1837 - will it help or hinder?

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COVID-19's introduction of The Wills Act 1837 (Electronic Communication) (Amendment) (Coronavirus) Order 2020. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are all currently facing unprecedented times that have impacted all aspects of our lives. The COVID-19...

Five reasons you should use a solicitor to write your will

Amanda Voakes
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If you are thinking about writing a Will , you may have considered doing it yourself. There are many templates and tools available online, along with vast amounts of information about the law and how to go about writing your own Will. However, there are...

What happens to debt after someone dies?

Amanda Voakes
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When someone you love has passed away, the last thing you might be thinking about is debt. However, there are many misconceptions about debt and inheritance and it is essential to understand your position. Many people that when a person dies, the debt dies...

How unspent income from lockdown could cut future tax bills

Amanda Voakes
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Internet shopping may have boomed during lockdown, but many people have spent less than usual while forced to stay home, and those with spare money have an opportunity to make the most of inheritance tax reliefs on gifts to family and friends if they act...

Inheritance tax threshold frozen - but why is IHT planning still important?

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If you intend to leave savings, property or other assets to family or friends after you die, you need to consider inheritance tax (IHT). It could cost your heirs up to 40% of their inheritance. By planning ahead, you can minimise IHT and ensure as much of...

Kick the frivolity and take the higher road over inheritance

Amanda Voakes
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Inheritance disputes may have risen in response to soaring property prices, second marriages and blended families, with relatives more likely to feel they are missing out, but the courts are pushing back on frivolous claims and obstructive family...

Why cohabiting couples must consider estate planning

Amanda Voakes
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Millions of couples across the UK are choosing to forego marriage and live as cohabitees . However, without proper estate planning, they could be putting their finances at risk. Unlike their married counterparts, unmarried couples have no automatic right to...

Care Fees Myths

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Out of the 15 million people who are aged 65 or over in the UK, approximately 400,000 (2.6%) will move into a care home at some point in their lives. Knowing what you or a family member should be paying for living in a care home is not an easy question....

Court of Protection rules COVID-19 vaccine should be given in best interest decision

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In January the Court of Protection confirmed that it was lawful and in the best interest of a care home resident for her to receive the COVID-19 vaccination where she did not have mental capacity to consent. The resident in question (Mrs E) had been...

What are Letters of Wishes and Statements?

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Letters of wishes or Statements are used as a supplement to the Will to expand on certain clauses. They are in no way legally binding, they merely sit alongside the Will as a guide. The documents act as a summary or explanation of the Will itself, giving...

Protecting digital assets and memories is vital as the shift online continues

Amanda Voakes
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The value of our online lives is becoming immeasurable, yet few people are recording or protecting their digital assets.  Whether the financial value of investments or the emotional value of family photos, if there is no arrangement in place to hand on...

New year, new you? Why it might be a good time to write a will

Amanda Voakes
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There is no denying that 2020 is a year which will go down in history - for many reasons. The global pandemic, Brexit, and the fallout from these events has had a significant impact on many areas of our lives. These events may have far-reaching implications...

Should you do something to protect your estate against future care fees?

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When I am discussing Wills and Estate Planning with clients, it often becomes clear that my clients are worried they will lose everything if they go into care. In many cases, after looking at their finances and analysing the existing care fee scheme, I am...

Make a Will, not a homemade mistake

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With everything going on at the moment, much more than usual people are aware of their own mortality and, naturally, many people have decided they cannot put making a Will off any longer. However, I have no doubt that making a Will may seem easier said than...

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