Wills, Trusts and Probate
Our experienced wills and trusts solicitors are committed to preparing your will, dealing with probates or trusts in a sensitive, efficient and professional manner.
The topic of wills, trusts and probate can be a difficult conversation to start for those thinking about our inevitable future. It is frequently put off but something that we must broach. Once the conversation is started it is easier than first thought and can bring a lot of relief and certainty for your loved ones and hopefully reduce the risk of dispute! That’s why our team of experienced wills trusts and probate solicitors is here to walk you through the process of writing a valid will, planning any trusts and taking care of probate.
What are Wills, Trusts and Probate?
If you are new to the process of creating a will or dealing with trusts and probate, the terminology applies in the following manner.
A will is a document in which someone (the testator) outlines the terms of what is to happen to their assets after their death. Without leaving a valid will, a person dies intestate, which means their assets will be distributed according to the laws of the country in which their assets are held.
A valid will allows the testator to choose their beneficiaries, executors, trustees and if needed guardians for their children together with instructions on how to distribute their wealth. The alternative is intestacy meaning that distribution is according to law There are a number of criteria that a will must meet to be considered valid by the probate registry and the courts. This is why it is recommended to consult a qualified and experienced wills and trusts solicitor for help when creating a will.
A trust allows wealth to be held in safekeeping for the benefit of certain people. It enables a person to pass money on but retain control. The money is protected until the time of your choosing for example grandchildren’s education, until the beneficiary is old enough to manage their own finances, or somebody might be allowed to live in a property for their life before the house is passed onto others.
Our wills and trusts solicitors can help with managing the trust assets, advising trustees on responsibilities and obligations such as tax compliance and liaising with beneficiaries or other professionals such as accountants.
Probate refers to the legal process whereby the validity of a will is established and the assets of the deceased person are distributed according to the instructions given in the will. As mentioned above, the validity of a will is paramount before the estate can be legally administered. The requirements for validity are very specific. An experienced wills and probate solicitor can assist with this.
Our experienced team of wills and probate solicitors will work alongside you to prepare your will and deal with probates or trusts in a sensitive, efficient and professional manner.
Our wills, trusts and probate solicitors can advise in matters relating to the following aspects:
- Creating a will and discretionary will trusts
- Probate and estate administration
- Variation of wills
- Capital gains and inheritance tax planning
- Contesting a will
- Defending an Inheritance Act claim
- Creating trusts and trust administration
- Powers of attorney, including preparation and registration with the Court of Protection
- Living wills
Consulting one of our wills and trusts and probate solicitors is the first step towards establishing a trusted relationship to advise and help you and your family plan ahead, ensuring legal worries are not a factor during stressful and difficult situations in the future.
Why should anyone consider planning for death? Elizabeth Whitaker explains.
Elizabeth answers the question ‘Can you give things away to avoid inheritance tax?’
What happens if you don’t make a will?
“Excellent! Professional, efficient, knowledgeable and pleasurable. Providing complete confidence in both the accuracy and timescales of the service being provided.”
Our wills, probate and trusts team is here to help.
We provide our services throughout Yorkshire, Cumbria and the North East. Please call us to find out how we can help. We can talk on the phone or arrange a meeting where we can discuss your options and give you a clear idea of timeframes and costs.
Alternatively, please contact us online and we’ll call you back when it’s convenient for you.