Wills, Powers of Attorney, Estates & Tax Planning Lawyers Malton, York & Wetherby
At Pearsons & Ward, our private client solicitors can assist you with a full range of services related to preparing a Will and making arrangements for later life. We understand that many people worry about putting plans in place for after they are gone, but our lawyers are friendly, approachable and will handle all matters sensitively and at your own pace. We can also provide support and assistance for family members or friends acting as executors of an estate.
Writing a Will Solicitors Malton, York & Wetherby
Our solicitors can advise on matters such as:
- Lasting Powers of Attorney
- Court of Protection
- Grants of Probate
- Estate Administration
- Reducing Inheritance Tax (IHT) in your Will and by making lifetime arrangements
- Deeds of Variation
- Setting up and administration of Trusts
We are members of the Law Society’s Probate Section and the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP).
Do I need a solicitor to help me make a Will?
It isn't a legal requirement that your Will is prepared or witnessed by a solicitor. If you want to make a Will yourself, you're entitled to do so. However, you should only consider doing this if your Will is straightforward. Even if you do prepare your own Will, it is advisable to have a solicitor check it to ensure there are no mistakes and that it reflects your wishes.
In some circumstances, it is particularly advisable to use a solicitor to draft your Will. Examples include:
- If you share your home with someone who isn’t your husband, wife or civil partner
- When one or more of the beneficiaries in your Will is unable to care for themselves – this might be a young beneficiary or someone with a learning disability
- Where several family members could claim on the Will – this might be the case if you have been married before and/or have children from a previous marriage
- You are resident outside the UK
- You have assets overseas
- You own your own business
What is a Power of Attorney?
A Power of Attorney gives someone else the legal authority to make decisions on your behalf, either because you are unable to make these decisions yourself or because you don't want to. In some cases, your attorney will only be able to make decisions for you if you no longer have mental capacity. A person will no longer have mental capacity if they are unable to make decisions themselves or are unable to understand the implications of the decisions they make.
There are two types of Power of Attorney:
Ordinary Power of Attorney
Ordinary Powers of Attorney (OPA) are only valid while you still have mental capacity and only covers financial decisions. An OPA can be useful if you're going into hospital and want someone to look after your finances temporarily.
Lasting Power of Attorney
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) can take two forms:
- health and welfare
- property and financial affairs
You can only register an LPA if you have the mental capacity to give this authority. An LPA for financial decisions can come into effect as soon as it's registered, should you choose. An LPA for health and care decisions will only take effect when you are no longer able to make your own decisions.
LPAs replaced Enduring Powers of Attorney (EPAs) in October 2007. If you made an EPA before this time, it should still be valid.
I’ve been named as an executor in a Will – what does this mean?
An executor is the person with responsibility for dealing with the deceased's estate. Sometimes a single executor will be appointed, but in other cases, there might be several executors. The role involves locating assets, valuing the estate, paying debts and any Inheritance Tax that is due, and distributing any leftover money, possessions and property to the beneficiaries identified in the Will.
This process can be complicated, and executors might be personally liable for any mistakes made. Our solicitors can offer support to executors or deal with matters on your behalf to provide you with peace of mind.
Contact our Wills, Powers of Attorney, Estates & Tax Planning Solicitors in Yorkshire
We can provide expert advice on a full range of private client matters. Whatever your requirements, speak to a member of our team today by calling 01653 692247 (Malton) or 01904 716000 (York) or 01937 583210 (Wetherby), or complete our online enquiry form.