Russell and Russell Solicitors can deal with all the legal aspects of your new life together. Whether you’re buying or selling a property, looking to protect your assets, thinking about starting a family or want to leave your possessions to those you care about, we can help.
We’ve nine offices across the North West; in Bolton, Atherton, Bury, Chester, Farnworth, Horwich and Middleton. And, because anything can happen at any time, we’re available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
A number of high profile cases have put the need to
make a will firmly back in the spotlight recently. Yet, despite the growing
number of inheritance disputes,
many of us still don’t bother until we absolutely have
While writing a will is all too often seen as one of
those jobs you’ll get round to ‘tomorrow’, the benefits of planning ahead can
be invaluable. It’s
usually a straightforward process, but if it’s not done properly it can have
repercussions. Here’s some things to think about:
an unfortunate truth; money changes people. Making a will helps prevent family
disputes over your estate
irrelevant whether you’ve promised certain possessions, property or money to
specific people, if you have no will, the law decides who benefits from your legacy,
·Using an online website to do it yourself can backfire
as they don’t take into account the complexities of the law, so your loved ones
could end up having to pay to rectify things retrospectively
·Will writers aren’t regulated. This means they can
promote themselves as experts without actually having any qualifications or
accreditations at all
automatically invalidates your existing will
·If you’re estranged from your partner and have
entered into a new relationship with someone else, it doesn’t matter if you
live together; if you’re not married or in a civil partnership, you’re new
partner isn’t legally entitled to anything if you die
·If you’ve split from your ex acrimoniously and
you die without having changed your will, your ex stands to inherit everything
as, technically, you’re still married
·Dying without a will can leave an estate liable
for inheritance tax
·Leaving money to charity in your will is just one
of the ways to help reduce the amount of tax payable on your estate. This is
something a solicitor can advise you on
·Make sure you sign it. Without your signature at
the bottom, your will isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on
not as expensive as you might think, especially if you’re planning to draft a
joint will (also known as a mirror will) as they’re often discounted
If you’re thinking
about making, or changing, your will, Russell and Russell can help. We’re bound by the Solicitors Regulation Authority’s code of conduct
and are legally obliged to maintain high levels of service. As well as being
regulated, we’re required to have insurance to protect
the public. We can also provide guidance on more complex financial issues, such
as inheritance tax and trust planning. We offer a free consultation where we can talk
through your circumstances and advise on what’s best for you.
A recent claim by insurance companies that the UK is the whiplash
capital of Europe has been found to be based on unreliable data cherry picked
to support the government’s reform agendas.
Ken Oliphant, professor of tort law at Bristol University,
said the evidence has been misleadingly presented, with main evidence coming from
a flawed study by the Comité Européen des Assurances (CEA) in 2004.
Professor Oliphant said the data
actually showed that Italy had nearly 50% more whiplash claims than England and
Wales in the period assessed, and that it had paid out almost twice as much in
compensation. Claims in Switzerland cost
10 times as much as those in the UK, while the Netherlands, almost six times as
Professor Oliphant said that though there have been specific
instances in which fraudulent whiplash claims have been exposed in the UK,
“there is a lack of reliable evidence as to extent of the problems of fraud and
exaggeration, and a corresponding concern that – as with the whiplash capital
claim – unreliable data will be used as the basis of tendentious interventions
in the public debate…..the majority of injured persons whose claims for
compensation are entirely genuine.”
Russell and Russell specialises in road traffic accident
claims and whiplash injuries. Our
solicitors are experts in personal injury compensation claims and offer legal
advice on a no win no fee basis so we can take on the insurance companies on
Russell and Russell is celebrating after raising money for charity by taking part in the annual Will Aid drive.
The firm raised £665 by writing wills for clients across Greater Manchester in return for a donation to charity. This is the seventh year the firm has taken part in the scheme, raising over £3,000 to date.
Probate solicitor, Rachel Kelly said: “The firm has embraced the Will Aid initiative with huge enthusiasm. We’re able to provide a service to clients and they are more than happy to donate to a good cause. Making a will means loved ones you leave behind know that you’ve given your affairs some thought.”
Will Aid has raised more than £17 million for charity since it launched more than 25 years ago. Campaign director, Peter de Vena Franks added: “One in three people die in the UK without making a will, potentially leaving their family and friends nothing but confusion and costly legal battles. Will Aid is a wonderful opportunity to not just make a will, but do it with the help of a professional. The added bonus is that you are helping nine charities in the UK at the same time.”
The scheme takes place across the country throughout November and supports nine of the UK’s best-loved charities; ActionAid, Age UK, British Red Cross, Christian Aid, NSPCC, Save the Children, Sightsavers, SCIAF (Scotland) and Trocaire (N. Ireland).
The recommended donation for a basic Will Aid will is £95 for a single will and £150 for a pair of mirror wills. For more information about making an appointment to write a will, visit http://www.willaid.org.uk/
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Government faces revolt over probate fee hike..Read why below..
Plans to introduce a new fee structure for probate applications have suffered a setback after a parliamentary panel of experts claimed they are unlawful.
Applications for granting probate are currently charged at £215 on estates valued over £5,000, but lord chancellor, Liz Truss recently announced a new model that could see executors, and ultimately beneficiaries, being charged up to £20,000 from the beginning of May. For more details about this, see our news article from 21st March 2017 at https://russellrussell.co.uk.
The findings of the report adds further pressure on Liz Truss to review the charges following overwhelming opposition from respondents of the initial consultation carried out by the Ministry of Justice. An online petition against the charges has already reached 300,000 signatures. The report also calls for the fees to “have the attention of both houses”, raising the possibility of them being delayed if not scrapped altogether.
The MoJ believes the new fee structure will raise £300m towards the cost of running the courts and tribunals service. The parliamentary joint committee on statutory instruments, however, questioned whether “the lord chancellor may use the power to prescribe non-contentious probate fees for the purpose of funding services (the courts) which executors do not seek to use”.
Judith Bromley, head of wills and probate at Russell and Russell and a member of Solicitors for the Elderly, said: “We’re delighted to see the Select Committee has confirmed what was clear from the offset – the Government’s probate fee hikes are nothing more than a backdoor tax and the MOJ has acted beyond its powers in enforcing these changes.
“Our hope now is that the Government re-evaluates these fees, and at the very least, finds a fairer way of structuring them”.
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