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Opinions and insights from our private client team

 

Grant of probate fees are expected to rise

Tamsyn Lees
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Following Elizabeth Young’ s blog back in November 2018 , an increase in fees for applying for a grant of probate is still expected - but not for a least another 21 days. So, in preparation, what will this mean for executors making an application and...

Inheritance Tax hacks - plan now to reduce your liability

Elizabeth Young
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Much of my time is spent advising on Inheritance Tax (IHT) and the ways in which people can reduce their liability. After all, IHT is very often viewed as a voluntary tax as there are legitimate ways in which the liability can be reduced and, in some cases,...

Understanding the role of an executor

Naomi Liston
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End of life planning is something that we all have to do. As an individual, a will is arguably one of the most important documents we have to create, so it's worth taking the time to get it right and understand the different elements.   It is...

Digital probate service: DIY probate

Esther Woodhouse
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Since 2017, HM Courts and Tribunal Services (HMCTS) have offered an online service enabling individuals to apply for a grant of probate in a deceased’s estate, providing certain criteria were met. HMCTS have now updated the system, now allowing...

The OTS releases its first report on the review into Inheritance Tax

Ben Taylor
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The Office of Tax Simplification (OTS) has released its first report on the review into Inheritance Tax (IHT). This first report comments on the administrative complexities of IHT which, surprisingly from a lawyer’s perspective, were the most...

A tax on the bereaved: increased probate court fees

Elizabeth Young
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A banded system for probate court fees, tantamount to “a tax on the bereaved”, is back on the agenda for the government following their last ‘U’ turn on this topic in the run up to the last general election. The increases have been...

The importance of guardianship

Tamsyn Lees
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Considering the worst case scenario is not always easy to do. However, when you have children it is important to think about who would care for them if the worst should happen to you. It cannot always be assumed that if the worst case scenario occurred...

OTS reviews Inheritance Tax

Ben Taylor
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In February I wrote about the importance of reviewing your will  and, in particular, about the need to stay on top of changes to the tax regime which might affect your estate planning (for those who missed it you can read it here ). As we near the...

Should relatives be allowed to enter civil partnerships to benefit from Inheritance Tax exemption?

Naomi Liston
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In the days of ever increasing property values, but where the amount a person can pass to anyone free from Inheritance Tax on their death has been frozen for almost 10 years, should we be looking to protect the assets of those co-dependent on one...

Things you need to think about when making a will

Naomi Liston
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Having met with clients to discuss their wishes and concerns and to take will instructions over a number of years, the same or similar initial questions often come up.  What is a will? A will is a legal document which takes effect on death.  A...

FAQs : Welfare attorneys

Gemma Hopper
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I regularly advise health and welfare attorneys on their duties, and it’s quite apparent that the same concerns come up time and time again.  Planning for later, or even end of life is difficult, so below are some answers to the questions...

No such things as "next of kin": the ever growing importance of Health and Welfare Lasting Powers of Attorney

Naomi Liston
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The concept of “next of kin” is often misunderstood and misinterpreted.  Contrary to common belief,  “next of kin” only exist on death and are those who would inherit if the person in question died without leaving a valid...

Statutory Wills - frequently asked questions

Gemma Hopper
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I recently assisted a deputy in making a Statutory Will for his brother, ‘Stephen’. The deputy making the application was the sole beneficiary under intestacy and did not agree that this was in his brother’s best interest.  Stephen...

Who has the legal rights to your social media and online 'assets' after death?

Nadine Wealands
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Electronic devices are used every day for more than just communication: we use them as a place to create and store documents, listen to music, read books and watch movies. We have social media accounts to share our pictures and videos. We buy and sell...

Reviewing your will - your executors

Ben Taylor
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In the last couple of months, I have written about the importance of reviewing your will to ensure it is up to date with your personal and financial circumstances, but also in light of any changes to the tax environment. Over the weekend, the importance of...

Capital Gains Tax: payment on account for residential property gains

Rhiannon Coleman
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HMRC have recently published a consultation document about their proposed changes to the calculation and payment of capital gains tax (CGT) in relation to the disposal of residential property – but, practically, what might this mean for taxpayers? CGT...

Reviewing your will

Ben Taylor
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In December I wrote about the research into the use of Agricultural Property Relief and Business Property Relief , the aim of which was to help HMRC to understand how people utilise these reliefs in estate planning. Following this, on 19 January,...

The role of APR and BPR in estate planning

Ben Taylor
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As the dust settles following the Autumn Budget, in amongst the various documents released around the same time, HMRC published research on the use of Agricultural Property Relief (APR) and Business Property Relief (BPR), and taxpayers’ attitudes...

HM Courts and Tribunals Service launch a digital probate service

Esther Woodhouse
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An online service for selected personal applicants of ‘non-complex’ estates has, in fact, been available under a pilot scheme since November 2016.  The launch now invites all personal applicants to apply providing certain criteria are met:...

The New HMRC Trusts Register

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A new raft of anti-money laundering rules has important implications for all trusts, and trustees need to be aware of their new obligations. A new Trusts Register Individuals and trusts are subject to stringent anti-money laundering laws. The EU’s...

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