TRUST REGISTRATION – deadline looming!

15th Jul 2022
The Trust Registration Service “TRS” deadline of 1st September 2022 for non-taxable trusts is now only… ...
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TRUST REGISTRATION – deadline looming!

15th Jul 2022

The Trust Registration Service “TRS” deadline of 1st September 2022 for non-taxable trusts is now only a matter of weeks away and all the indications are that there are many trusts that remain unregistered.

 

It is important that all Trustees  understand the need to register a trust, including those that they may not even be aware of!
Which trusts are affected?

The majority of non-taxable trusts are now within the scope of the registration regime.

This includes lifetime Trusts but, importantly, also Trusts set up by a Will when somebody dies.

Will Trusts are often “passive” trusts which can easily be overlooked or forgotten about by Trustees. For example, a Life Interest Trust containing a share of the property. If the life tenant (often the spouse) remains living in the property, it is easy to forget or not realise that there is a Trust which needs to be registered.

What are a trustee’s responsibilities?

Legal responsibility for registration falls on the trustees, and it is a matter for trustees to decide and appoint a lead trustee to do this.

The trustees are required to keep accurate and up-to-date written records of the beneficial owners, including settlors (the people who established the trust), trustees, and beneficiaries.

The lead trustee is also required to update the register within 90 days of any changes/ updates occurring.

What happens if you do not register a trust with the TRS?

There is a legal obligation for trustees to register the trust.  If you do not register the trust or keep the details on the register up to date, HMRC may impose penalties and fines for non-compliance.

 

Please contact us if you would like any advice.

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Congratulations!

1st Jul 2022
Congratulations to our colleagues Jade Peckett and Will Morris for passing their STEP Advanced Certificate… ...
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Congratulations!

1st Jul 2022

Congratulations to our colleagues Jade Peckett and Will Morris for passing their STEP Advanced Certificate in Taxation of Trusts and Estates.

 

A very tough exam!

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Phones are back!

24th May 2022
Our phones have now been restored!… ...
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Phones are back!

24th May 2022

Our phones have now been restored!

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Our phones are down!

24th May 2022
We are aware that our phone system is currently down. Please email wills@pavilionrow.com and we… ...
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Our phones are down!

24th May 2022

We are aware that our phone system is currently down. Please email wills@pavilionrow.com and we will get back to you ASAP

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Asset Protection Trusts, are they the Silver Bullet

19th May 2022
When used appropriately, trusts can be a great way to protect assets. However, too often… ...
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Asset Protection Trusts, are they the Silver Bullet

19th May 2022

When used appropriately, trusts can be a great way to protect assets. However, too often they are sold by unregulated firms as the ultimate solution for everything, promising to protect the family home from care fees, minimise Tax, and prevent probate costs.

These schemes are expensive, risky (as they may not work), totally inappropriate for many, and difficult to get out of.

A recent article in ‘This is Money’ is well worth a read to appreciate real life examples of the extent and scope of the problems that these sales tactics have caused.

There was also a segment on BBC’s RIP off Britain, last week, interviewing families affected by these types of trusts, often marketed as products such as, ‘The Family Property Probate Trust’, ‘Family Probate Preservation Trust’, or ‘Lifetime Living Trusts’

Important, this is a specialist area of law. Anyone considering this type of planning must first speak directly to somebody who is fully qualified to give advice.

Please see  our factsheet for further information.

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OPG process for registering LPAs, littered with delays and errors

6th May 2022
Once you have made an LPA appointing your attorney/s, for your attorney to use the… ...
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OPG process for registering LPAs, littered with delays and errors

6th May 2022

Once you have made an LPA appointing your attorney/s, for your attorney to use the document it must first be registered by the Office of Public Guardian (OPG)

Pre pandemic the registration process would take circa 8 weeks, it can now take 20 weeks and the process is littered with errors.

An industry body has recently written an open letter to the OPG asking them to address the problem. However, while we wait and hope that the issues are resolved, our advice to clients is – BE PREPARE and make an LPA now before it is needed. Without a registered LPA your attorneys simply will not be able to act.

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CHRISTMAS OPENING TIMES

23rd Dec 2021
The office will be closed between 25th December and 4th January. If you have an… ...
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CHRISTMAS OPENING TIMES

23rd Dec 2021

The office will be closed between 25th December and 4th January. If you have an urgent query please call the office number.  Our out-of-hours answering service will be able to take a message. These messages will be checked periodically by a member of staff and dealt with appropriately,

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Office Move

25th Aug 2021
As of the 1st September 2021, our main office will relocate to Sheffield. The decision… ...
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Office Move

25th Aug 2021

As of the 1st September 2021, our main office will relocate to Sheffield.

The decision for this has been based on opportunities given to us to further grow and develop our team. The management team has not changed and our ethos and commitment to providing a high level of service remains the same.

Although the main office has now relocated to Sheffield, we do still have representatives in York available to meet with our clients.

 

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New Director and Head of Legal

1st Feb 2021
Emilda Morgans has joined us as director and Head of Legal. Emilda first join us… ...
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New Director and Head of Legal

1st Feb 2021

Emilda Morgans has joined us as director and Head of Legal.

Emilda first join us in January 2020 as a temporary consultant solicitor but we are delighted that she has decided to stay.

Emilda has a wealth of knowledge and experience in Private Client Law and we are very excited to have her on board

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When is a pound worth 60p?

9th Dec 2020
Why reducing your clients inheritance tax should be at the top of their New Year… ...
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When is a pound worth 60p?

9th Dec 2020

Why reducing your clients inheritance tax should be at the top of their New Year resolutions.

If the dawning of a New Year has anything is common with the last, it’s the resolutions that many of us choose to set. Often set with genuine intent, resolutions have a habit of falling by the wayside somewhat. And if we’re honest, it’s completely understandable. We’ve all been there; the New Year resolutions are set, you even outline initial provisions – but somehow, life just gets in the way. This is a common theme, particularly when it comes to Financial Planning and Inheritance Tax considerations.

As your clients trusted advisor, few know your clients financial circumstances better than you. It’s likely your client has, to some extent, looked into how they might be able to reduce their overall IHT liability. In many instances though, the information that is readily available can reinforce false perceptions; that to reduce your IHT liability you need complicated schemes that will be scrutinised by HMRC.

But for many this can’t be further from the truth. There are plenty of options for standard IHT planning before you need to think about complex and aggressive solutions.

We often come across clients in later life with assets over the IHT band and good incomes that they are saving. But for every extra pound they save they only save 60p i.e. their eventual beneficiaries will be giving 40p to HMRC in IHT!

For these clients gifts out of income are an excellent way to minimise IHT – and one that is often overlooked.

But what is classed as ‘income’? And what criteria will HMRC apply when accepting gifts out of income?

  • Normal income includes salaries and pensions – plus interest, dividends and investment income (including rental income and annuities).
  • The gift must be out of normal income and MUST leave the person fully able to maintain their usual standard of living, including luxuries such as holidays
  • The gifts must form part of a regular pattern or provide proof of a commitment (for example, the first payment of a life assurance policy).
  • HMRC will generally accept the expenditure as ‘normal’ if it happens three or more times.
  • Often mis-understood – the gift doesn’t need to be the same amount to the same person – it just has to be of a similar nature. For example, ‘every year I give 50% of my surplus income to family members.’

Gifts out of income are extremely valuable as there is no maximum amount (as long as they fit within the above criteria). They can provide substantial IHT savings and are simple – but they MUST be done correctly and well documented to ensure they don’t form part of HMRC ‘s IHT calculations.

It’s important that your client is given the right advice before the time comes. Reducing their overall IHT liability will strengthen the relationship not just with your client, but with their extended family too.

Here at Pavilion Row, we are specialists in Wills, Probate and Trusts – and we’re always here to offer advice and support. If you have any queries regarding the above or would like to understand more about how decisions made now affect what happens in probate, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

 

 

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Pavilion Row: Daring to be Different!

8th Oct 2020
Specialists in Wills and Probate At a glance, we’re a specialist firm providing services in… ...
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Pavilion Row: Daring to be Different!

8th Oct 2020

Specialists in Wills and Probate

At a glance, we’re a specialist firm providing services in Wills, Powers of Attorney and Estate Administration (Probate). You’ll know many companies who provide similar services, with whom you might even pass referrals to. However, scratch the surface and you’ll see that we’re far more than your average private client firm. This isn’t us saying ‘’we’re so much better, everyone should be working with us’’… in fact, far from it. We aren’t for everyone and we remain comfortable in the fact that ‘everyone’ isn’t for us. You see, our values underpin who we are and ensure we’re able to consistently provide value to our introducers and their clients. We believe in delivering the best possible advice through highly trained and experienced staff giving a flexible, friendly and efficient service that is personalised to you.

But it doesn’t stop there. Here are 5 main reasons we’re happy to be different:

 

Looking for a long-term partnership?

Instead of looking at things from a numbers perspective and thinking about our next referral, we want to work with introducers who are interested in and can see the benefits of, building a long-term relationship. We want to get to know you and your client, to understand their needs as you do, to make them feel valued. In doing this we’re able to provide the client with first class service and also highlight any additional or future financial services opportunities, that can be passed back to you.

 

The tools to develop your client relationships and identify new opportunities.

We understand that talking about Wills or Estate Planning with your clients isn’t always the easiest thing to do. Our partnership means we’re genuinely interested in helping our introducers and their clients.  That’s why we offer full support and provide you with guided questionnaires and telephone support. Our questionnaires are carefully structured to help you nurture different conversations with your clients.

 

What is an ABS anyway, and why is this an advantage?

Pavilion Row is set up as an Alternative Business Structure. This means that whilst we are still regulated and protected in the same way a traditional law firm would be, we are able to modernise our client focussed approach in a way that traditional law firms perhaps can’t, ensuring your client receives dedicated, expert advice and support throughout. Is this really an advantage? – You bet! Not only do we specialise solely in Wills and Probate, but we’ve been able to develop our business for over 10 years to ensure a consistent client focussed approach. And we still have the same level passion, care and dedication as when we started! We’re a caring company with a professional but relaxed culture and every member of team is committed to their own training, development and growth.

 

Honest, Reliable, Advice.

In essence, this our essence. Our Brand Essence, that is. We have worked hard to develop our Brand, our culture and our values. You can rest assured that from first introduction to our 30th phone call, you and your client will know you’re getting honest, reliable advice, without false promises or hidden agendas. Our team are approachable, our processes are efficient, and our fees are totally transparent. Only by knowing the right questions to ask and understanding the importance of the answers can we be sure that we give the correct advice for what our clients need and want. For this reason, the company was founded on the basis that all our advisers are qualified to the highest level through the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP).

 

A STEP in the Right Direction.

STEP is the global professional association for practitioners who specialise in family inheritance and succession planning otherwise known as ‘Wills and Probate’. STEP strive to improve public understanding of the issue’s families face in this area and promote and encourage education and impeccably high professional standards among their members. STEP qualification and training is something we are incredibly proud of. All of our advisors undergo STEP training and qualification and are wholly committed to their continued professional development in their respective areas. It takes a lot of time, energy and resources to remain consistently on top, but these are the standards we expect of ourselves, and the industry as a whole.

 

By demonstrating this commitment to the learning and development of our team, we became STEP employer partners which means that STEP have recognised and accredited our internal training; allowing us to operate to the highest standards. This means that you and your clients are guaranteed the very best advice and support throughout your journey – advice you rest assured is up-to-date and solely for the clients benefit.

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Wills: It’s the advice you pay for, not the document’’

1st Oct 2020
You don’t know what you don’t know! Many of us have seen the advertisements for… ...
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Wills: It’s the advice you pay for, not the document’’

1st Oct 2020

You don’t know what you don’t know!

Many of us have seen the advertisements for cheap Wills and the DIY kits that are available, but are you really getting a good deal? A Will is a legally binding document that is essential in ensuring your assets and savings are distributed as per their wishes. But many people fail to prepare for what is arguably an unsettling eventuality and in the instances where an ‘off the shelf’, DIY approach has been taken, errors can easily be made and go unnoticed or whereby the legal witnessing rules aren’t followed correctly – it can make the Will invalid. Unfortunately, however, if there is no valid Will in place should the worst happen, your assets will be distributed in line with the rules of Intestacy. This can often cause upset and grievance between family members.

When people don’t know what’s involved in writing a Will or they’re unsure what the cost of having a professionally written Will would be, the price can often drive the decision making and lead people to searching for ‘cheap’ (often online) alternatives or picking up a DIY kit from a local retailer. Like Pavilion Row, we think all legal practices and Will writers should want to be transparent about their fees, displaying them clearly on their website (see our fees here). The key here is education, providing clients with enough relative information to allow them to confidently make an informed decision. It isn’t the document itself that you is paying for, it’s the specialist advice that guarantees you receive a valid Will that accurately represents your final wishes and ultimately give you peace of mind that your loved ones won’t be left with any unexpected surprises or unnecessary upset during probate.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the pitfalls you could fall victim to, without the right knowledge:

Will DIY Kits

As mentioned above, with this kind of approach errors can easily be made and go unnoticed which ultimately means your final wishes aren’t guaranteed to be followed; and whereby legal witnessing rules aren’t followed correctly, the Will can actually be classed as invalid – meaning your assets may not be distributed / gifted as you would have chosen. It’s also worth noting here that when a person chooses this method of Will writing, they’re often (through no fault of their own) unaware of the legal nuances, particularly around financial matters and beneficiaries; such as up to date inheritance tax legislation and how to protect and provide for a ‘blended family’ model. We however, can ensure you have (for example) a valid Will that protects both your immediate family and other long-term wishes.

In addition to this, you risk leaving your family with unnecessary financial and emotional stress that could lead to additional legal bills and unexpected tax. A recent study actually suggests that ineffective DIY Wills are the cause of prolonged probate ordeals for over 38,000 families per year.

‘Cheap’ or Free Wills

A quick Google search for cheap Wills will see results coming up from £19.99! Although this may appear like a good deal on the surface, this should in fact be a warning. Remember, it isn’t the document itself that you are paying for, it’s the specialist advice that guarantees you receive a valid Will that accurately represents your final wishes and ultimately gives you peace of mind that your loved ones won’t be left with any unexpected surprises or unnecessary upset during probate. In addition to running the risk of being left with an ineffective or even invalid Will as mentioned above, there have also been numerous cases whereby not being made aware of the small print, has cost families dearly. After all, the devil is in the details. A recent article uncovered cases where families were charged over £30,000 by banks to administer estates. In the small print that many clients were unaware of, the banks who offered the free service reserved the right to be named executor – charges for which were only made clear when probate began. Although extreme, not having an executor of the clients choosing isn’t out of the ordinary, under these circumstances. Many people who opt for a cheap / free Will, often end up with a document that fails to accurately detail all assets. In some (but not all) cases, families are not made aware of the fees for handling estates after death. Any discrepancies after death can go unresolved and cause unnecessary family upset, during what is already a delicate time.

Many of the cheaper or free Will writing services are done online, offering no support and no guarantees. Many cheap wills state that they are checked by a solicitor. Although this may sound reassuring, all they are really doing is checking that the document is valid. A document can be valid, but it does not mean that it is right for your needs or accurately reflects your wishes. What is important is the advice you get. When you speak to a qualified, experienced adviser they know what questions to ask and the relevance and importance of the answers given. They are able to provide tailored advice according to your unique set of circumstances -therefore ensuring that you get a document that truly fits your needs and requirements.

Without getting the right advice and support, you could lose out by paying too much inheritance tax on money or assets that you leave. You deserve the opportunity to ask questions or gather advice from professionals who understand the complexities of Will writing.

Ultimately, there are many issues that can occur if you have a Will written without receiving expert advice and guidance. The most common are:

  • Difficulty locating the Will after death
  • Not updating the Will when personal circumstances change
  • Failure to sign the Will or have the signing witnessed
  • Having a witness that is also a beneficiary
  • Oversold Wills that are unnecessarily complex
  • Having a Will that is valid but inconsistent with your wishes

For us, we have a duty of care to ensure that the Will is actually completed. We don’t ‘take the money and run’ once the document is sent out for signing and our duty of care does not end. We follow up to ensure that the wills are signed and returned to us for checking and provide full support, throughout the journey.

A STEP in the right direction. All our advisers are trained and qualified to the highest standards outlined by STEP (Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners). Choosing a STEP qualified adviser means your adviser is the most qualified and highly trained in this specific area of Law and as such, is able to provide you with highest level of services and advice.

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