What happens if I can’t afford a funeral?

What happens if you can’t afford to pay for your loved one’s funeral…or your loved ones can’t afford to pay for yours? A reporter for the Independent went undercover to find out, and was horrified to discover that relatives are being barred from some publicly funded funerals, and ashes are not being released to the families.

What does an Executor do?

The role of Executor involves collecting in all your assets, paying off your debts, and distributing your estate in accordance with your wishes. It’s a time consuming role that is a considerable responsbility, so you and your Executor(s) should be realistic about the potential challenges of the role.

Confidence Tricksters & Estate Planning…

Our attention is sometimes caught by media reports of manipulative individuals taking advantage of older or vulnerable people for financial gain.
This might be by convincing the person to change their Will, or set up a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) in respect of Property and Financial Affairs, in their favour.

Services

Wills    

Representing my views on healthcare

When we become too ill to speak for ourselves we are said to have ‘lost capacity’. Necessary decisions about treatment and care will be made by medical professionals, deciding what is in our best interests and acting accordingly. For your voice to be heard, an appropriate person will have to make an application to become your Health and Welfare Deputy.

What’s happening with Probate fees?

The planned increase to Probate Fees has not yet happened – though it’s still likely that it will. What can you do to assist your Executors, who will have to pay the fee when they apply for the Grant of Probate? We can advise you. Book an appointment with us to ensure your estate is prepared.

Are you an Organ Donor?

Pre-paid funeral plan provider, Rest Assured Funeral Plans, have partnered with the NHS in a pilot scheme to increase membership of the Organ Donor Register. It is hoped that people who are already having frank conversations about death will be open to discussing what should happen to their bodies when they die.

…Gail made it a painless and thought provoking exercise… Will Writing Service

We’ve entered the Shine (virtual) Balloon Race in May!

We’re delighted to be fundraising for Shine – a charity offering support to those living with hydrocephalus and/or spina bifida. Shine host balloon races to raise funds for their shunt services. With an eye on the environment, they’ve made the races a virtual event so no real balloons will be released!

Talking about Trusts

Trusts are used to manage the passing on of assets or money in a particular way. There are a number of different types of Trust, serving different functions. A Trust may be established during a lifetime, or started under the provisions of a Will. They are therefore a crucial aspect of estate planning.

Bicester…Buckingham & now Oxford!

Our business has clients all across Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire. We are delighted to have opened offices in Buckingham and now also in Headington, Oxford. We are now offering our Wills, Probate, Lasting Power of Attorney and general estate planning services from all three offices. Come and see us!

The cost of dying is on the up again

Of course there’s a cost to dying! But when we die, we’re not there to foot the bill, so why should we worry?
The thing is, it can be tricky – or impossible – for loved ones to come up with a significant sum of money at the time of a death. (The costs & infographics in this blog post are taken from SunLife (2018), Cost of Dying Report.)

Why not write a Will?

If you don’t have a Will…perhaps it is because you’ve simply never thought about it? 55% of adults in Britain still do not have a Will, and yet disputes about inheritance are on the increase. Writing a Will is the only way to ensure your exact wishes are known to your friends and family when you are not actually there to spell it out.

Are you prepared for all eventualities?

Sudden incapacitation, deteriorating illness or loss of ability to communicate means you may no longer be able to state your wishes at a time when you most want to be heard. Would it give you peace of mind to know that your affairs will be dealt with by someone you trust? With an LPA, you can rest assured that the person speaking for you is chosen and trusted by you.

Probate fees are set to rise

The Government has said that Probate Fees will increase in 2019. The fee accompanying a Probate application will be calculated on a sliding scale, likely to be around 0.5% of the value of the estate. This is a large increase on the current fee, which has not been well received in the private client sector.

Home Visits & Priority Service

We pride ourselves on putting our clients first. Our office is open for appointments on Saturday mornings, as well as on weekdays, to ensure our clients can access our services when they have the time to do so. There are times when clients can’t come to us at all. We understand this.

What costs are associated with funerals?

Funeral costs matter! The BBC reports that funeral providers are competing to reduce their prices. You may have seen funeral providers advertise 'reduced fees' in national and local press too. But what does 'reduced fees' in relation to funeral providers really mean?...

Hidden charges in Wills drafted by banks

Many people have had their Will drawn up by a bank, appointing the bank as Executor. This enables them to charge a large fee for their probate services, leaving less money in the estate. Book your free Will review now, and we can ensure your Will carries out your wishes.

Marriage Matters…

Marriage matters... ...by which we mean, it makes a real difference to your Will! While all eyes are on Prince Harry and his bride this weekend, you can be sure there are advisers making sure their estate affairs are in order. Why?  Because their marriage changes...

Making a Living Will

Are there circumstances in which you would refuse life saving medical treatment? Are you concerned that your wishes may be ignored by those seeking to prolong your life? You can make a Living Will – properly known as an Advance Decision.

How do we cope with an aging population?

It’s a well known fact that advances in science and developments in healthcare have resulted in a population who live longer, but what are the practical implications on society and our resources?

Alzheimer’s Awareness

Alzheimer’s Awareness As Dementia Friends we strive to make planning for, and managing, life with dementia straightforward. All aspects of family life are affected by the disease, as Wendy Mitchell shares in her groundbreaking account of living with dementia. Aida...

Practicalities of Funeral Planning

Practicalities of Funeral Planning It's usually a time of shock and sorrow but, for those closest to the deceased, the immediate aftermath of death is dominated by the need to plan a funeral.  Logistics, family politics and cost can all weigh heavily, and add to the...

What is your digital legacy?

What is your digital legacy? Most of us leave digital footprints daily! We're Tweeting our opinions, Facebooking our friends and Instagramming our delicious meals and sunshine filled holidays, whilst LinkedIn showcases our careers and contacts. What happens to these...

Do I have to pay Inheritance Tax?

Do I have to pay Inheritance Tax? Inheritance Tax (IHT) is the amount of tax payable by the estate of a deceased person. The estate is made up of all the deceased's assets: house, car, savings and investments, cash, jewellery and so on.  The liabilities, such as...

Drop by & say hello!

Drop by & say hello!Join us on 3 February 2018 as we launch our monthly Saturday drop in advice clinic! Our office at 10 Crown Walk is open from 9am - noon on the first Saturday of each month.  Please stop by to ask your questions about all things estate...

Choosing a pre-paid funeral plan

When you're thinking about purchasing a pre-paid funeral plan, it can be hard to know where to start. There are various comparision sites, the individual providers have a great deal of hard copy and online information available, there are different payment and...