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Wills, probate and administration

Wills – caution against asset

In this useful article, the author looks at matters that should be considered in applications to vacate a caution entered against estate assets. In a recent case, a claim was made under the I(PFD)A 1975 by the testator’s two sons who had been excluded from the will. T was a farmer who had inherited a farm from his parents, in equal shares with his sister.

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Probate – lifetime gifts

Does a beneficiary have a duty to the executor to reveal a lifetime gift made by the testator? Yes, says the First Tier Tax Tribunal. In this case, the beneficiary of his father’s will was penalised for failing to reveal to the executors a substantial lifetime gift – despite a number of requests – and received an £87,000 penalty from HMRC.

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Court of Protection – habitual residence

Guidance on the appropriate test to determine habitual residence in Court of Protection cases has been given. At issue was where an adult (SW), who lacked capacity to decide where to live and the true nature of her care needs, was habitually resident for the purposes of determining whether the English court had jurisdiction to deal with MCA 2005 applications.

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Capacity – deprivation of liberty

The Court of Protection has supplemented and elaborated on questions of law arising out of a recent deprivation of liberty case involving adults who lacked capacity.

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Wills – family provision

A claim against an estate for reasonable provision failed on the facts which included the claimant’s behaviour towards her mother, the testator.

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Trusts – remuneration

A lay trustee acting gratuitously was ordered to refund money taken as salary, and was removed as a trustee, after his relationship with a trust beneficiary broke down. A family owned an estate held on trust which included a number of properties. The estate was low on funds. The properties included a house which was let; and a cottage occupied for a peppercorn rent by the half-brother of the claimant. The claimant was a beneficiary of the trust.

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Procedure – will; gifts to practitioners

The Law Society has issued an important practice note for practitioners preparing a will in circumstances where the client leaves a gift for the practitioner, or his/her family or colleagues.
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Probate – costs

The Rawlings case (see previous entry) continues to spurn much legal discussion, and the latest judgment – this time in relation to the issue of costs of rectification of a will – gives rise to further commentary on costs.
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Wills – costs; rectification

Where there is a reasonable but unsuccessful challenge to a will, the court will often order that all parties’ costs will come out of the estate. The latest Rawlings judgment specifically addresses the issue of the costs of rectification of a will.
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Trustees – duty to beneficiaries
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
Trustees cannot simply ignore beneficiaries’ request for information about a trust, the High Court has held. In this case, the trust property was a farm outside Cardiff. Read more...
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Should electronic property searches be treated as disbursements for VAT purposes? Alternatively, are they part of the legal service provided, and so subject to VAT? Read more...
Professional – update
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From December 2018 there will be new rules requiring firms to publish prices for conveyancing, probate, motoring offences and immigration, as well as the price for bringing ET claims.  Read more...
Service mistake – discretion?
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
To what extent do you have a duty to point out the other side’s procedural errors (as part of your obligation to comply with the ‘overriding objective’)? Read more...
Exiting the Portal – reasonable
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
Insurers should be very careful about making allegations (for instance, at Stage 2 of the EL/PL Protocol), especially if they could be interpreted as allegations of ‘dishonesty’. Read more...
Airbnb – breach of lease
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
It now seems clear that an Airbnb short let will be in breach of a typical long lease. Read more...
GDPR – data rooms
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
If L is planning to sell a property subject to leases, then almost certainly a data room will be set up containing all relevant documents. Read more...
Rights of way – public
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
There are four categories of public rights of way: Read more...
Financial remedies – company assets
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
A recent ruling illustrates when a court can treat a company-owned asset as as a matrimonial asset. Read more...
GDPR – references
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
GDPR impacts on the giving of references: Read more...

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