We are here to help you with:
| Advice on issues concerning the elderly | Preparation of wills |
| Probate | Administration of Estates | Taxation advice |
| Setting up of trusts | Charities Law | Lasting powers of attorney |
| Court of Protection | Disputes over wills and estates |
Whether you need advice for yourself or for an elderly relative or friend we can advise on matters such as making a will, appointing an attorney, making a living will, protecting the family home and other issues on which you may need assistance.
Power of attorney
Lasting Power of Attorney
Making a lasting Power of Attorney means that you can decide who you would like to make decisions for you in respect of your financial and property affairs, or health and welfare in the event that you are ever unable to make these kinds of decisions for yourself.
If you ever were unable to manage your affairs, for example through loss of mental capacity, illness of injury, your family and friends may find themselves in the position that they cannot make these decisions for you. This could potentially leave you in a very vulnerable position, for example if your money could not be accessed on your behalf to pay for your accommodation, food or care.
A Lasting Power of Attorney can be used if you still have mental capacity but do not want to have the worry of dealing with your own financial affairs.
A Lasting Power of Attorney can also include guidance to your Attorneys and restrictions, affecting the decisions they can make. This means that even if you were to lose the capacity to deal with your own affairs, you can maintain some control over the decisions our Attorney will make on your behalf.
We also ensure that the Lasting Power of Attorney is registered at the Office of the Public Guardian as part of our services, as this must be done before an Attorney can exercise any of the powers granted to them by a Lasting Power of Attorney.
After you Lasting Power of Attorney has been registered, we will store it for you free of charge for as long as you wish us to. We can also provide certified copies to yourself or your Attorney for their use at any time, for a small copying fee.
Enduring Power of Attorney
Prior to 1st October 2007, it was possible to make an Enduring Power of Attorney. Lasting Powers of Attorney have since that date replaced Enduring Powers of Attorney.
It is the duty of the Attorney appointed under an Enduring Power of Attorney to ensure that the document is registered with the Office of the Public Guardian as soon as the person who made the Enduring Power of Attorney loses the mental capacity to manage their own affairs. Our Private Client team is able to assist Attorneys with this process. We can also offer advice and assistance should any objections to the registration of the Enduring Power of Attorney be made.
General Power of Attorney
A General Power of Attorney can grant someone authority to deal with your affairs on a temporary basis i.e. to manage your property whilst you are working abroad. They can also grant a person authority to deal with only limited matters i.e. to handle a financial transaction for you.
General Powers of Attorney can also grant wide powers to someone to deal with all of your affairs until you revoke the power. However a General Power of Attorney becomes invalid if you subsequently lose your mental capacity.
Court of protection
If a person has not made an Enduring or Lasting Power of Attorney during their lifetime the situation may arise that no one has the authority to deal with their affairs on their behalf. This can cause difficulty for the family caring for this person, and potentially leave them in a very vulnerable position, for example if the person’s property must be sold to pay for their care or their money cannot be accessed to pay for their food and other essential expenses.
If you are caring for someone, and have found yourself in this situation, then we can assist you in making an application to the Court of Protection to become that person’s Deputy. If the Deputyship order is granted by the Court, this will grant you the authority to manage that person’s affairs on their behalf.
The Court of Protection is also able to make interim orders during the application process if necessary. This is often very useful if there is an urgent need to access someone’s assets to pay their mounting care costs or other people seeking immediate payment.
We are also able to offer assistance to people who have already been appointed as a Deputy by the Court of Protection.
By making what is commonly called a living will you can give directions in advance about the medical treatment to be given to you in a situation where you are mentally or physically incapable of giving instructions to your medical attendants.
It will allow you to state that in certain circumstances no further medical treatment is to be given to you.
You may also wish to consider appointing a trusted friend or relative to act as your attorney to make decisions about your medical treatment on your behalf should you become incapable of making your own.
We act for many owner-managed businesses as well as private individuals and we are able to offer advice on charitable structures, associated taxation issues and the duties and liabilities of trustees.
It is important that every one makes a Will to ensure that their assets are passed on to those they wish to benefit on their death, and so that the problems of intestacy are avoided.
Many of us have elderly relatives who may be approaching a time when they can no longer look after their own affairs. We can offer sensitive advice and guidance in drafting lasting powers of attorney.
We undertake the administration of trusts and estates and offer a comprehensive service to trustees, executors and beneficiaries.
Any of our team will be pleased to help with your enquiry and will provide a no-obligation quotation of our fees.
Administration of estates
Losing a relative or friend is often one of the hardest events to handle in our lives. The process of administering their estate can then be complicated and overwhelming. Our Private Client Team will tailor our service to meet your needs, to ensure that the process of administering the estate is as stress-free as possible. We can offer as much or as little support as you feel you need.
A Grant of Probate is a legal document which grants the executor of an estate, or the administrator if the deceased left no Will, the authority to deal with the deceased’s estate. Without a Grant of Probate you may be unable to access or dispose of any of the deceased’s assets, which is vital so that the assets can be realised and distributed either in accordance with the deceased’s Will or the laws of intestacy, if the deceased left no Will.
We can assist you by assessing all of the assets and liabilities of the estate, preparing and completing the application for the Grant of Probate on your behalf, finalising the deceased’s tax position, collecting in the assets and paying all of the outstanding liabilities and finally distributing the assets to the beneficiaries of the estate.
Our costs will vary depending upon the amount of work we undertake, the value of the state and the level of assistance your instruct us to provide. However, our rates are competitive.