Our private client team offer a full range of private client services, from estate and inheritance planning to probate applications and estate distribution.
We understand the importance of ensuring that, should the worst happen, your affairs are dealt with efficiently and your loved ones catered for financially. Careful planning now can ensure that your loved ones are protected from any unnecessary stress and hardship during difficult times.
Our private client team offer the following services:
Wills & Estate Planning
Preparing and maintaining a will to ensure your assets are given to those who mean the most to you is vital. Without a will your estate will be distributed in accordance with the ‘intestacy rules’, and your family and loved ones will have no say in who receives your money, property and possessions. Most notably, unmarried partners are not entitled to inherit any of your assets, irrespective of how long you have been together. We are able to write your will and advise you on how best to ensure your loved ones are protected and provided for.
As well as writing your will, we are able advise on the options available to ensure your will is as tax efficient as possible, and the maximum benefit of your estate passed on to those left behind.
It is important to regularly review your will to ensure that it remains relevant and any changes in your circumstances are reflected. Until a will is destroyed or a new will prepared, any old wills remain valid even if your personal circumstances have changed entirely. Even if your own circumstances have not changed, the inheritance tax laws are regularly amended, and it is important to make sure your will takes full advantage of the current system.
Probate/ Letters of Administration
When someone dies, with or without a will, in many cases a ‘Grant of Representation’ is required in order for the deceased’s assets to be accessed and distributed. We understand that the death of a loved one is an incredibly difficult time, and many do not want to deal with the mountain of paperwork that can arise following a death. We offer sensitive and personal professional support through a range of services to assist you to the degree your feel comfortable. Our services range from simply reviewing an application you have prepared before it is submitted, to comprehensive assistance with notifying relevant bodies of the death, preparing the probate application and distributing the estate.
Lasting Powers of Attorney
A Lasting Power of Attorney is a document that enables you to decide who will make important decisions on your behalf if you were to be incapacitated and unable to make decisions for yourself. This enables you to appoint someone (your ‘attorney’) who knows you well and who you trust to make decisions regarding your finances, property and welfare, and to manage your affairs in your best interests. If you wish, it is possible for Lasting Powers of Attorney to be used even though you are able make decisions for yourself, but require some extra help from a loved one. This can be extremely useful if you are unable to get around easily, or struggle when dealing with banks or utility companies.
There are a number of ways in which attorneys can be appointed, when and how they are able to act, and what decisions they are able to make. Our expert team are able to advise you on how a Lasting Powers of Attorney can best suit your personal circumstances.
It is a common misconception that your family have a legal right to deal with your affairs as your ‘next of kin’. If you have not made a Lasting Power of Attorney and were to become unwell and unable to make decisions for yourself, your family are not simply able to step in, and they would need to apply to the Court of Protection before they are able to make decisions and manage your affairs on your behalf. Preparing a Lasting Power of Attorney means that your attorneys are able to take over whenever needed.
In the event that a loved one has become suddenly unwell and unable to manage their own affairs, you will need to apply to the Court of Protection to obtain a ‘Deputyship Order’, naming those who are most appropriate to deal with that person’s finances. When these circumstances arise, it can be difficult to manage the application procedure along with the additional physical and emotion care that the individual requires. We are able to assist with the preparation and submission of a Deputyship Application as well as with annual account reports.
Our private client team appreciate that everyone is different, and no two families’ circumstances are the same. We are able to offer sensitive and personalised professional support to advise you and assist with the difficult yet inevitable aspects of life.
Anand Patel (firstname.lastname@example.org)