Shrewsbury Solicitor warns individuals about 'DIY' estate planning
22nd April 2014
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A local solicitor is warning individuals about the possible repercussions of undertaking the estate administration process without the guidance of a solicitor following evidence that more people are 'going it alone' - often with time-consuming and costly results.

Pauline Davies, Probate Solicitor at Shropshire-based PCB Solicitors, is urging residents across the region to seek legal advice when administrating the estate of a friend or loved one, rather than taking it into their own hands. Her advice follows recent reports from Solicitors for the Elderly (SFE), which claim there has been an increase in the number of individuals seeking professional guidance from a solicitor after making a mistake or finding the legal planning process too confusing.

“Inheritance Tax can be complicated,” explained Pauline. “Some people just aren’t always aware of the complexities, and assume it’s a straightforward process that they can undertake themselves. Whilst this is do-able, all reputable solicitors would encourage individuals to seek timely specialist legal advice. Even in the most straight forward of cases, it can actually save time, money, and worry.

“For instance, Mrs A’s will had included a tax saving trust, but when her husband took it upon himself to administer the estate, he paid the whole estate to himself, an issue which would have caused complications when Mr A eventually dies. Fortunately in this case a solicitor was able to sort the matter out, but it highlights the difference a solicitor can make through their knowledge and understanding of the process. In another case, Mr G sold some shares that had made a gain during the administration of his late sister’s estate and had to pay tax. However, if he had transferred the shares to himself first, before selling them, he could have avoided tax.

“All too often I hear about cases where information has been passed on either mistakenly, or is misconstrued, and although correct, applies to completely different circumstances which can lead to it not being dealt with properly. At PCB, we have a number of SFE members across the team who are able to support individuals through the estate planning process, as well as work in partnership with the deceased individual’s family to help and support them with the legal and technical work. I’d urge anyone that is currently dealing with or having difficulties with an estate to get in touch on 01743 248148 for advice and guidance,” Pauline concluded. 

PCB Solicitors LLP is a modern partnership, with offices in Shrewsbury, Broseley, Church Stretton, Craven Arms, Knighton, Ludlow, Telford, and Worcester. While they have origins back to 1860, the firm is forward-looking and offers a full range of legal advice for both individuals and businesses, including property, family advice and childcare matters, wills, trusts, probate and estate planning, accident and personal injury, litigation, criminal law and corporate and business law.

For further information about PCB Solicitors’ complete range of legal services, please contact the Shrewsbury Head Office on 01743 248148 or visit the website via the link.

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