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Why use a solicitor?

Having a plan in place to manage your estate upon your death can bring you and your loved ones security and peace of mind.

When it comes to planning what happens in later life, getting legal advice can seem daunting. Some people worry about understanding the legal jargon and not wanting to ask too many questions. Others worry about the cost of speaking to a solicitor or legal professional and decide instead to approach an unregulated ‘legal adviser’.

Unfortunately, not all advice is created equally and not everyone giving advice is regulated. Legal advisers are unregulated and are not obliged to have liability insurance. Although it is often tempting to save some money upfront, some legal advisers charge extra fees for ‘add-ons’, storage of your will and may ask your executors to pay a fee before they will release your will to them. If you are charged £20 a year to store your will, you could be £800 out of pocket if it is stored with them for 40 years!

If the advice a legal adviser has given you is incorrect it can leave your family in a horrendously difficult and stressful position after you have passed. When this happens, beneficiaries and executors are often faced with huge expense and distress trying to remedy the consequences of mistakes in tax and trust advice and in will drafting, unable to raise a complaint with the Legal Ombudsman.

A firm of solicitors on the other hand is governed by strict rules and is heavily regulated. The firm is legally obliged to have liability insurance in place to compensate for any errors made. You also have recourse to the Legal Ombudsman, who are there to assist you if your complaint remains unresolved.

When it comes to the legal advice you receive, the most important objectives should be:

  • You feel heard and understood.
  • You understand the legal implications and consequences of the decisions you are taking.
  • You feel in control of how your estate planning is managed and you have absolute trust in the advice you are given.

Our Wills, Trusts & Probate team aim to fulfil all of these objectives through their friendly, approachable, highly qualified and very experienced service. We are here to help you plan for your future and the future of those you love. For more information, please call us on 01603 620508, or email the team directly.

This article was produced on the 2nd February 2023 by our Wills, Trusts & Probate team for information purposes only and should not be construed or relied upon as specific legal advice.