Wills and Estate Planning
Why make a Will
A Will is the cornerstone of effective estate planning. With a Will, you can ensure that your assets pass in accordance with your wishes, that they are properly protected, and that tax is mitigated as far as possible.
Without a Will, your assets may not pass as you would want them to. Depending on the value and nature of your assets, they may not all pass automatically to a spouse or partner. Equally, the tax position may be less favourable if you rely on the intestacy provisions, which apply where there is no Will. In addition, as the intestacy provisions simply provide rigid rules as to who should benefit from your assets and in what proportions, this can lead to disputes in Court following your death. Such disputes can often be avoided by the more nuanced approach that you can take with a professionally drafted Will.
We offer a personal, expert and specialist service. We listen carefully to your wishes and take time to understand your circumstances. We then advise you on the options most appropriate for you, together with the tax implications. We are experienced in advising on appropriate Will Trusts for more complex estate planning and tax mitigation.
We often offer advice on how best to draft Wills to take into account the following:
Protecting assets for children, or asset protection generally;
Providing for disabled or vulnerable beneficiaries;
Second marriages and step-families;
Leaving a property or an interest in a property to a beneficiary;
Business assets; and
Overseas assets, including where your main home is overseas.
Once you have decided on how you would like to structure you Will, we then draft it within an agreed timescale and send the draft to you together with a full commentary on the provisions and on the tax implications. This ensures that you have complete clarity on the effect of your Will and reassurance that it reflects your wishes.
We provide a fixed fee for your Will from the outset. Due to the personalised nature of our Will drafting service, our fixed fees are quoted for on an individual basis once we have met and discussed matters with you. The initial meeting is therefore on a no-obligation basis and we would not charge for it if, following the meeting, you decide not to proceed.
Once your Will has been finalised, we offer a professional storage service, free of charge. We also offer free registration of your Will with Certainty, a national Will register.
We are accredited Wills and Probate specialists under The Law Society’s Wills and Inheritance Quality Scheme and have built a reputation for providing expert and personalised advice. Please do feel free to contact us to arrange for an initial no-obligation meeting.
Please click the links below to read our case studies, which are designed to highlight everyday family scenarios where we would strongly recommend that you contact us regarding your Wills and Estate Planning. The case studies do not provide an exhaustive list, but we would recommend getting in touch if you are:
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"We really enjoyed working with Stuart Downey, he is professional, relaxed, smart and able to explain well the issues at hand."
Mr M, Private Client. August 2017