WillSuite’s 2024 Annual Report reveals surprising trends in estate planning

The release of WillSuite’s 2024 Annual Report has provided a comprehensive look into the intricate landscape of will drafting across England and Wales. Drawing from data sourced from over 200,000 wills and 140,000 Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs), the report sheds light on key demographics, emerging trends, and notable statistics within the estate planning industry. […]

Business Branding vs Personal Branding

Over the last few weeks, Legal Growth Founder – Tom Stansfield has been traveling up and down the country attending client meetings, hosting training for law firms, attending conferences and meeting prospective clients. Some of this has been documented on both the Legal Growth socials but also on Tom’s… Why? It’s all about business branding, […]

Calling for pre-paid probate regulation

pre-paid probate regulation

We recently wrote about the welcome regulation of funeral plan providers by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). It has become painfully clear how crucial regulation is after the company Safe Hands went into administration earlier this year. Their customers’ funeral plans have been voided and it is likely that no more than 20% of their […]

Podcast: Prepaid Probate… what’s it all about?

Today's Wills and Probate Podcast

In this latest Today’s Wills and Probate podcast David Opie is joined by the CEO of Probate Protect, Chris Cauvain. Chris discusses the professional, and personal, journey which has led him to setting up a prepaid probate business alongside his business partners. With the regulation of funeral planning nearly upon us, is prepaid probate the […]

Today’s Training partners with HTF Legal

Today’s Wills and Probate has partnered with Helen Forster of HTF Legal to provide live and on-demand legal training for private client practitioners and willwriters. Today’s Training was launched in 2020 with the intention of providing a “value add” service for readers of Today’s Wills and Probate and Today’s Conveyancer. Covering a range of topics […]

Law Society: UK-Mexico trade talks should lock in legal services market access

The UK has started its free trade agreement (FTA) talks with Mexico, with solicitors’ leaders hoping negotiators will lock in current legal services market access and increase trade in other sectors. The International Trade Secretary launched negotiations on a new UK-Mexico Free Trade Agreement (FTA) alongside her Mexican counterpart, Tatiana Clouthier, in London last week. […]

Leaseholders on fixed retirement incomes could be denied equity release

Leaseholders on fixed retirement incomes could be denied equity release

New analysis reveals 450,000 homeowners in England and Wales are at risk of becoming mortgage prisoners because their leases have run down to less than 75 years, the crucial threshold for mortgage finance, including lifetime mortgages. The data compiled by Lifetime Mortgage Gateway Logistics (LMGL) shows there are currently an estimated 400,000 leaseholders in England […]

How UWOs help in the fight against money laundering

UWOs

Unexplained wealth orders (UWOs) were introduced four years ago to help tackle the problem of money laundering by high-net worth individuals, often with foreign and political connections. The concept of recovery of criminal proceeds has persisted in the UK for some time. Tools such as a civil recovery order have been available and commonly used […]

Charities “miss out on £940 million tax relief”

Tax

Hard-pressed charities could be missing out on over £940 million a year as generous donors fail to claim tax relief on the money they give, new research from Handelsbanken Wealth Management & Asset Management shows. Charity Commission data shows 60% of organisations have suffered a drop in income during the pandemic. The nationwide study found […]

Digital go-live for subject access requests

Digital go-live for subject access requests

Requests for personal information can now be made through a new digital service. A new digital service allowing individuals to request personal information is now available which aims to improve the user experience for subject access requests (SARs). The process allows individuals to request information held by the Legal Aid Agency and other parts of […]

Two-thirds plan to adopt “flexi-retirement” lifestyle

Two-thirds plan to adopt "flexi-retirement" lifestyle

Latest research from abrdn reveals that two-thirds of those planning to retire this year will work part-time to keep up with the rising cost of living. The research, which surveyed 2,000 Brits showed that many would-be retirees are considering part-time work with two-thirds (66%) planning to remain in some form of employment in 2022 compared […]

IDR Law: Martin P Holdsworth on the rise of contentious probate and the IDR Network

Martin P Holdsworth

Today’s Wills and Probate sat down with Martin P Holdsworth, Founder and Director of specialist contentious wills and probate firm IDR Law, to discuss the recent increase in contentious probate cases, IDR Law’s newest innovation – the IDR Network (IDRN) and Martin’s take on the future of the contentious probate industry. Today’s Wills and Probate: […]

Case commentary: Fellner v Cleall

Fellner v Cleall

Removing an executor and obtaining costs – Fellner v Cleall [2021] EWHC 3599 (Ch) The dispute A recent case heard in the High Court demonstrates the risks which personal representatives face in proceeding to obtain a grant when there is an ongoing will dispute and in the face of opposition from the beneficiaries. I recently […]

Contentious probate services “more than doubled”, report finds

Contentious probate services "more than doubled", report finds

According to the latest IRN Research report, UK Wills, Probate & Trusts Market 2022: Market Trends, the wills, trusts and probate market passed the £2.0 bn mark for the first time in 2021, and although fragmented, is a market that is growing. Research also finds that the sector is still populated by thousands of mainly […]

One in five donors now write a charity into their will

Legacy income

Public appetite for legacy giving has hit a new height with almost one in five UK charity donors choosing to leave a gift in their Will (19%), up from 14% in 2013. A further 10% intend to make a gift from their Will or are preparing to do so.  Legal advisers play a critical role […]

Law firm reports 72% spike in inheritance disputes 

Law firm JMW reports 72% spike in inheritance disputes 

Law firm JMW Solicitors has seen a circa 72% rise in Inheritance Act claims in 2021 as relatives quarrel over much smaller sums of money. Partner Alison Parry has warned of the need to take a robust approach to Will-making to avoid loved ones falling victim to a legal challenge.  A recent case handled by […]

40% of funeral plan providers yet to submit for FCA regulation

40% of funeral plan providers yet to submit for FCA regulation

From 29 July 2022, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) will regulate funeral plan providers, following a change in the law. Despite the announcement by the FCA however, over 40% of previous providers are yet to submit their applications to the scheme, prompting speculation amongst industry experts that most providers won’t be seeking to become regulated. […]

Digital Signatures – “Yes! You can!” – Today’s Wills and Probate Podcast

Today's Wills and Probate Podcast

In this podcast David Opie is joined by Charlotte Ponder, Legal Director at CTT Group (formerly Countrywide Tax and Trust Corporation) and Chris Jones, Managing Director and ICON-UK to discuss the progress being made on the introduction of electronic signatures in legal services. Both Charlotte and Chris are members of the Industry Working Group on […]

Know your options when dealing with an estate with no Will nor next of kin

Intestacy is rarely ever straightforward and can often lead to complications including, family disputes, unnecessarily high Inheritance Tax bills or the search for missing beneficiaries, just to name a few. On top of this, being unable to locate a next of kin makes the estate that much more difficult to administer. The latest blog from […]

How legal tech is enhancing the probate process

You’d be forgiven for thinking that the legal sector has lagged behind many other sectors in terms of technology adoption across the years. However, in recent times there has been a notable shift in both mindset and practice, with various SaaS-based products coming into play and covering everything from basic practice management through to AI-driven […]