Wills, Trusts & Probate
The legal issues surrounding the death of a loved one can often be complex. We provide expert knowledge and peace of mind by advising on what steps you should be taking and help find practical solutions when you are considering how to ensure your future wishes and financial affairs are protected.
Talk to one of our friendly and experienced team on 01582 514000
Sympathetic and understanding estate administration
Our team of experienced private client lawyers have built up considerable technical experience in relation to wills, inheritance tax planning and the administration of estates and have considerable expertise in all matters of concern to our older clients too.
We are also on hand to advise if there is a dispute over a will, trust or estate. We can provide access to independent financial advisors, accountants and other professional advisors.
Expert advice on wills, trust & probate issues
We pride ourselves on being sympathetic and reassuring and will work with you at each stage and enable you to find a resolution as efficiently and cost-effectively as possible. We are members of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners and are recognised as being able to give practical, expert advice. We regularly advise private individuals, couples, family businesses, trustees and beneficiaries.
Our offices have facilities for disabled people, including wheelchair access, a car park, lift and toilets.
Don't take our word for itThe members have the ability to listen and communicate, in often very personal and private circumstances. True desire to assist clients to reach a realistic outcome.The private client team at Machins handle family matters with care and sensitivity whilst explaining matters clearly.The team at Machins are approachable and although they are often dealing with potentially difficult situations, they respond to clients professionally but also sensitively and with understandingLegal 500 2022The team exude confidence in what they do and the advice they offer.Legal 500 2022My family and myself have dealt with Machins for many years and have used many of their professional departments. The service you receive is professional but also very personal to your requirements.Legal 500 2022Friendly, efficient and supportiveLegal 500 2022
Our Wills, Trusts & Probate Team
Our Wills, Trusts & Probate Services
We regularly advise private individuals, couples, family businesses, trustees and beneficiaries on a multitude of different topics.
Making a will is crucial to ensure your assets pass to those you choose when you die. And yet, research consistently finds that over half of UK adults do not have a will.
With an ageing population and more people living in less traditional family set ups it is becoming increasingly common for people to challenge wills and make claims on the estates of their deceased relatives.
Probate is the process by which a person’s estate is administered after they die. It is usually carried out by a spouse, a son or daughter or a close relative with the help of a solicitor. It’s a very important role because everything must be done according to the law and in accordance with the wishes of the deceased.
Dealing with the loss of a relative or friend can be very difficult and those left behind are usually also tasked with the role of administering the estate. Even if you have dealt with probate before, every estate is different and the work involved, as well as the potential legal issues, can vary enormously.
Dealing with conflicts relating to a loved one or family member’s estate can be an emotional and stressful process. We have a wealth of experience advising claimants, executors and trustees on claims relating to estates, guiding them through a sometimes complex area of law.
Inheritance tax (IHT) is the tax which is payable when a person dies. IHT is not payable in all situations.
Making gifts during your lifetime can be a useful tax planning tool. If you make a gift and then survive for 7 years, the gift is not included in your estate for tax purposes when you die. In this way, you can pass your assets to your family or friends without incurring any inheritance tax liability.
Your estate may be impacted by Inheritance Tax if the total value your assets less the total value of any debts you have at the date of your death is greater than £325,000.
Trusts can be created for a number of different reasons. They are commonly created in a Will and can also be created during a person’s lifetime. This may be for tax or other plnning purposes and we can advise on the options that are available to you in your circumstances.
Planning for care fees may involve reviewing and amending your and your partner’s Wills to establish trusts which will provide some asset protection.
Intestacy rules govern how a person’s estate is dealt with where a valid will has not been made, or if the will is not sufficient by itself.
When it comes to estate planning on the death of an individual, the default legal positions for married and unmarried couples who have not made wills are very different. There is a common misconception that long term partners are automatically entitled to a share of their partner’s estate if they die without a will. However this is not the case.
Lasting powers of attorney are forms you complete and sign, naming people you want to be able to make decisions for you which continues even if you are no longer able to make them for yourself (if, for example, you have dementia or are unable to communicate following a stroke).
Everybody knows how important it is to make a will but most people can’t find the time to visit a solicitor or worry that it’s too complicated or expensive.
It is very important to make a will. If you die without one, the way your money, property or possessions are distributed may not be what you would have wished.
Unless we have been through it before, most of us don’t know what we are supposed to do from a legal point of view when someone close to us has died.
This page will give you up to date information in relation to our pricing structure and timescales for our Wills, Trusts & Probate services.
Probate lawyers are urging the government to introduce reforms to make it easier for families to access the ‘digital assets’ of deceased relatives. A new report carried out by STEP – the professional body for inheritance planning advisers – highlights the extent of the distress caused by being cut off from digital assets when family members
Understanding Inheritance Tax
Planning for the future – the importance of making a will
Probate and Estates – what you need to know when someone dies
Related Resources (View more resources)
Presentation slides from the webinar ‘Understanding inheritance and property – how to avoid disputes and claims’ which took place on Wednesday 7th July 2021.
Learn why you should write a will with Edward Gill and Radha Chauhan.
Presentation slides from the webinar ‘Wills and inheritance tax planning – putting the right protection in place’ which took place on Wednesday 2nd June 2021