Estate Administration

Northern Ireland farmers encouraged to make death bed tax plans

Northern Ireland farmers encouraged to make death bed tax plans

By Lenore Rice Specialist rural accountants have encouraged farmers in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK to seek advice in respect of inheritance tax and capital gains tax in... Read more

Carer who stole £300k from vulnerable elderly woman jailed for 9 years

By Lenore Rice A woman who has been given a 9 year jail sentence for stealing nearly £300,000 from a vulnerable 102-year-old woman that she was caring form, and for making... Read more

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

By Lenore Rice Thursday 15th June is World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, which aims to increase awareness about the abuse and suffering inflicted on older people in Northern Ireland, the UK... Read more

Significance of u-turn on absolute limits to care funding

By Lenore Rice The Conservative Party would prefer to call it a clarification rather than a u-turn, but either way, Theresa May has announced that there would be an “absolute limit... Read more

Over half of parents want to give away early inheritance

By Lenore Rice Just over a half of parents want to give an early inheritance gift to their children according to a new study by Key Retirement. The 53 per cent of... Read more

Writing a Will isn't just about who gets what

By Lenore Rice It is regularly estimated that approximately 70 per cent of adults do not have a Will, and recent research suggests that nearly a third of adults still fail... Read more

Supreme Court rules in favour of animal charities in Will challenge

By Lenore Rice The Supreme Court has ruled in favour of three animal charities who had challenged the decision of the Court of Appeal to award £160,000 to a woman who... Read more

Brothers asserting lack of testamentary capacity lose Will challenge

By Lenore Rice Two brothers have failed in their efforts to contest a Will of their father which bequeathed half of his £250,000 fortune to their stepmother. Richard and Jonathan Powell claimed... Read more

Make a Will in March and our fee goes to Northern Ireland Hospice

Wilson Nesbitt will be taking part in Northern Ireland Hospice's "Make a Will Month" again this year, meaning you can write a Will in March and make a donation instead... Read more

More parents using discretionary trusts to protect family assets from divorce

By Lenore Rice New research suggests that more people are using discretionary trusts to protect gifts of money or assets to their married children in the event of a future divorce. Discretionary... Read more

Inheritance lessons to learn from Prince and a princess

By Lenore Rice When it comes to making a Will and making plans to pass on your estate, there are no more obvious high-profile examples to look at than the cases... Read more

Making a Will continues to feature on resolution lists

By Lenore Rice There are a few resolutions that carry over from each year, and will almost certainly find themselves on next year's list as well - one of which is... Read more

5 things to consider when making a Will

By Lenore Rice A high percentage of adults in Northern Ireland consider making a Will but fail to carry through to writing one, largely because it is difficult to contemplate a... Read more

Renewed calls for scrapping of inheritance tax

By Lenore Rice There have been renewed calls for the abolishment of inheritance tax after it was revealed that 28,000 families in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK were... Read more

Failed challenge to Will that reneged on property inheritance

By Lenore Rice A man who gave £8,000 to his mother-in-law so that she could purchase her council house alleged that she had promised to leave the property to him upon... Read more

Inheritance dispute judge says no clear promise was made

By Lenore Rice A son has failed in his attempt to contest the Will of his mother that left almost the entire estate to his sister, with the High Court judge... Read more

Court reduces payout to farmer's daughter whose parents changed Will

By Lenore Rice The Court of Appeal has reduced the £1.3million payout awarded to a woman who worked on her parents farm on the basis of a promise that she would... Read more

Widow stood to earn £6m from divorce but got £36k in Will

By Lenore Rice A woman is contesting the Will of her husband who died while they were in the middle of divorce proceedings from which she expected to receive a £6million... Read more

Cohabiting couples urged to make a Will to protect assets

By Lenore Rice A woman who almost lost £400,000 of assets she had accumulated with her partner is urging cohabiting couples to make a Will. Sue Singer, aged 56, says her house... Read more

Poll reveals inheritance tax is the most hated tax in the UK

By Lenore Rice A survey has revealed that inheritance tax is the most hated tax among people in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK, with 90 per cent of... Read more

Increase in gifting to cut inheritance tax bills

By Lenore Rice An increasing number of people in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK are making gifts of assets in order to reduce the inheritance tax bill their... Read more

Judge awards co-habiting partner of 18 years share of property

By Lenore Rice A judge has awarded a woman her deceased partner's share of the property they lived in together for 18 years, after it had originally passed on to his... Read more

Inheritance tax payments in the UK reach 35-year high

By Lenore Rice A freeze on the inheritance tax threshold, coupled with the removal of some tax reliefs and rising property prices has resulted in the highest number of families in... Read more

Jail for benefits claimant who failed to disclose £400k inheritance

By Lenore Rice A woman has been jailed for 2 years for claiming over £50,000 in benefits despite having received a £400,000 inheritance which she failed to disclose. Patricia Boaden received a... Read more

Reminder to write a Will in November and our fee goes to charity

By Lenore Rice We are just past the half-way mark of Make A Will month, in which you can write a Will and make a donation to charity instead of paying... Read more

Will Aid month is underway - make a Will and our fee goes to charity

By Lenore Rice Throughout the month of November you can write a Will with the assistance of our experienced Will writing solicitors, and make a donation to charity rather than pay... Read more

Woman used power of attorney to steal sister's inheritance

By Lenore Rice A woman is facing prison after being found guilty of the theft of her sister's £50,000 inheritance. Maxine Forster, now aged 50, had been granted a power of attorney... Read more

Will Aid - Write a Will and our fee goes to Charity

Wilson Nesbitt is delighted to confirm that we will be again taking apart in the Will Aid scheme this November, which means you can write a Will and donate the... Read more

People in Northern Ireland are the most reluctant to make a Will

By Lenore Rice Fewer people in Northern Ireland have made a Will according to research that looked at adults across the whole of the UK. The research by looked at how... Read more

Increase in number of people contesting a Will in court

By Lenore Rice Figures from the Ministry of Justice have revealed a large increase in the number of people going to court to contest a Will. Complex family structures are thought to... Read more

Will revisions required to benefit from new inheritance tax allowance

By Lenore Rice Accountants are warning that thousands of people in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK will need to update their Will in order to benefit from a... Read more

Daughters to contest inheritance conditions that reward marriage

By Lenore Rice The two daughters of millionaire Maurice Laboz, who died at the age of 77 this year, are going to court to contest the conditions he placed on the... Read more

One in three people are counting on inheritance cash payout

By Lenore Rice One in three people in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK are expecting to receive an inheritance cash payout according to new research by insurer LV=. A... Read more

Disinherited daughter successfully challenges Will in landmark case

By Lenore Rice A landmark court decision that awarded a disinherited daughter a third of her mother's estate, despite the latter's express intention that she should receive nothing, could result in... Read more

Budget speech delivers living wage and inheritance tax boost

Chancellor George Osborne surprised many people in his Budget speech with the announcement that the living wage would be introduced for employees aged over 25, coming into effect next April. The... Read more

Tory inheritance tax plan is 'special treatment for property owners'

By Lenore Rice The Conservatives have announced that they would introduce a new zero-rate band of £175,000 on a main property involved in an estate for inheritance tax purposes. Essentially, the threshold... Read more

Increasing number of estates are liable for inheritance tax

By Lenore Rice The continued freeze of the threshold at which inheritance tax becomes payable is expected to result in a record amount of inheritance tax receipts in 2015/16. The current inheritance... Read more

£1.3m compensation for daughter who was promised inheritance

By Lenore Rice The High Court in Cardiff has awarded £1.3million compensation to a woman who worked for nothing on her parents farm for years on the promise that she would... Read more

Wilson Nesbitt is participating in NI Hospice Make a Will Month

By Lenore Rice Throughout the month of March clients can write a Will with Wilson Nesbitt and make a donation to Northern Ireland Hospice instead of paying the standard solicitor fee. Make... Read more

38,000 inheritances delayed each year because of DIY Wills

By Lenore Rice New research suggests that as many as 38,000 inheritances in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK are delayed each year because of poorly drafted Wills. An ineffective... Read more

Robin Williams family take inheritance dispute to court

By Lenore Rice An inheritance dispute involving the family of Robin Williams highlights the importance of clear and detailed instructions when writing a Will or creating a Trust. The children of Robin... Read more

Call for capital gains tax and inheritance tax to be merged

The Institute of Directors (IoD) is calling for the government to merge capital gains tax and inheritance tax to stop owners of high valued properties being taxed twice on the... Read more

Divorce among over-50s is up but negligence on Wills remains

By Lenore Rice The number of people over the age of 50 having a divorce has increased by 85 per cent since 2000, yet there is still the same negligence as... Read more

Legal help to fulfill your New Year's resolutions

A new year is upon us, and according to surveys and polls, over half of us have made some kind of resolution for 2015. As ever, health and finances top... Read more

Why modern life for over-50s makes writing a Will a necessity

By Lenore Rice Surveys consistently conclude that approximately 7 out of every 10 adults in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK do not have a Will, and there is... Read more

Woman who wished her mother dead loses inheritance claim

By Lenore Rice A woman who wrote to her mother to disown her and wish her dead has failed in her attempt to claim an inheritance on the estate. Mary Waters, the... Read more

Son loses inheritance and goes to jail for fraud

By Lenore Rice A man who defrauded his terminally ill father of nearly £50,000 has been given a 20 month prison sentence and will not receive the £27,000 inheritance from his... Read more

Will Aid - Make a Will and donate to charity instead of paying us

By Lenore Rice Wilson Nesbitt is delighted to announce that it is taking part in Will Aid again this year. Running for the month of November, people can write a Will... Read more

Lack of Will allows estranged wife to inherit everything

By Lenore Rice An ex-policeman who had lived with his new partner for 15 months had failed to renew his Will before his death, meaning all of his estate passed to... Read more

Men are more likely to keep and update a Will

By Lenore Rice New research by the Law Society reveals that men are more likely to have a Will and keep it updated than women, however the vast majority of adults... Read more

NI farmer admits forging will to inherit £1m estate

By Lenore Rice A farmer from Northern Ireland has pleaded guilty to forging a Will in order to inherit the £1million estate from an elderly woman. Catherine Haughey, who died in December... Read more

Cameron says inheritance tax cut will have to wait

By Lenore Rice Prime Minister David Cameron has warned that an increase in the threshold at which inheritance tax becomes payable may have to wait until after the General Election in... Read more

Rise in council charges on houses to recoup care costs

By Lenore Rice Local councils are registering a legal charge on 8 properties a day to recoup elderly care costs according to new data obtained under the Freedom of Information Act. NFU... Read more

UKIP pledge to scrap inheritance tax

By Lenore Rice The UK Independence Party (UKIP) will pledge to scrap inheritance tax at it's annual conference this Friday, and while the party's chances of general election success next year... Read more

Inheritance tax implications of rising property prices

By Lenore Rice Northern Ireland property owners have learned that their house values increased by the lowest amount of the whole of the UK in the year to the end of... Read more

Inheritance disputes causing older couples to divorce

By Lenore Rice Divorce solicitors in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK are seeing an increase in divorces among older couples who cannot agree on inheritance issues, and in... Read more

Son faked signature of brother to take £1.5m inheritance

By Lenore Rice Bristol Crown Court has heard that a man was cheated out of his share of a £1.5million inheritance after his businessman brother forged his signature to wind up... Read more

Proposals for inheritance tax to be paid before death

Inheritance tax is often referred to as the 'death tax', but if a proposal is taken up by the government it could become just another one of the taxes we... Read more

Musician Sting tells children not to expect big inheritance

By Lenore Rice Musician Sting has said that he does not intend to leave his £180million fortune to his children, and that they have already been told not to be expect... Read more

Daughters contest Will leaving fortune to mother's young lover

By Lenore Rice Two daughters are challenging the Will of their mother that left most of her £1.2million estate to her lover who was 23 years younger than her. Alison Walker and... Read more

Council fails to force sale of house to fund nursing care

By Lenore Rice A local council has lost it's bid to force the sale of a property belonging to an elderly woman who was taken into a nursing home. Mary Walford, aged... Read more

Government to promote lasting powers of attorney

By Lenore Rice The government is keen to promote lasting powers of attorney, will writing, and other matters connected to life planning with a special day to be held next year. The... Read more

Thank you to all our clients who took part in Will Aid

We would like to thank all our clients who took part in Will Aid 2013 - the annual scheme where people can make a Will and have the solicitor fee... Read more

Emily Morris receives STEP NI Diploma

Pictured right - The President of the Supreme Court Lord Neuberger presents Emily Morris with her STEP NI Diploma at a STEP conference at the Stormont Hotel in Belfast with... Read more

Parents lose bid to go back on farm inheritance promise

By Lenore Rice A woman who worked for years on her parents farm for low pay has won her fight to be given a stake in the business after her parents... Read more

Sisters remove mother as administrator of father's estate

By Lenore Rice The wife of multi-millionaire Northern Ireland man Michael Hoey has been removed as his personal representative after the High Court in Belfast ruled that she did not understand... Read more

Law Society advises Will writers on digital legacies

By Lenore Rice The Law Society has advised Will writers of the importance of clear instructions when it comes to their digital legacies. Many testators now have digital or online property, such... Read more

Maeve Binchy considered herself a great Will maker

By Lenore Rice Irish novelist Maeve Binchy, who died aged 72 in 2012, considered herself to be a "great Will maker" and claimed she had updated her Will at least 40... Read more

PM keen to increase inheritance tax threshold higher

By Lenore Rice David Cameron says he is keen to encourage more people to leave an inheritance to their family by increasing the threshold at which inheritance tax becomes payable. Mr Cameron... Read more

Nephew promised inheritance successfully contests Will

By Lenore Rice The High Court has acted to ensure that the nephew of an elderly woman who left his job to look after her received the inheritance he was promised,... Read more

Wilson Nesbitt clients help us raise £1665 for charity

By Lenore Rice We are delighted to confirm that our clients have helped us raise £1665 for the charities supported by Will Aid by writing a Will with us and making... Read more

Lessons we can learn from Philip Seymour Hoffman's Will

By Lenore Rice The Oscar winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, who passed earlier this month, had written a Will that we can take some very valuable points from. First of all, that... Read more

Half of UK inheritance tax paid in London and South East

By Lenore Rice Approximately £3.1billion inheritance tax was paid in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK in 2012-13, but half of that was generated from estates in London and... Read more

NI Mortgage advisers say only 1 in 4 clients have a Will

By Lenore Rice The results of a survey of mortgage advisers in Northern Ireland suggests that at best only a quarter of clients purchasing or remortgaging their property have written a... Read more

Supreme Court upholds Will despite signature mix-up

By Lenore Rice The Supreme Court has delivered an important judgment in respect of a challenge to mirror Wills of a couple who accidentally signed each other's Will. Maureen and Alfred Rawlings... Read more

HMRC challenges yield £108m in additional inheritance tax

By Lenore Rice New research shows that the HMRC brought in 23 per cent more inheritance tax in 2013 as a result of challenging the valuation of estates, netting an additional... Read more

Police officer who forged father's Will gets jail term

By Lenore Rice A police officer who forged his deceased father's Will in order to receive the entirety of his estate has been given an eight month prison sentence. Darren Hart says... Read more

99yr old woman sued by grandson over farm inheritance

By Lenore Rice The High Court has been asked to rule in a matter concerning a 99-year-old woman who is being sued by her grandson in respect of the succession of... Read more

The Will to keep your New Year's resolution

By Lenore Rice Around half of us in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK are expected to make resolutions for the New Year - only a small percentage will... Read more

Rising house prices to increase inheritance tax bills

By Lenore Rice The estates of deceased persons in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK are likely to face a higher inheritance tax bill this year as a result... Read more

Wealthy women under 65 are most likely to inherit

By Lenore Rice A new government study has revealed that self-employed women under the age of 65 who are already considerably wealthy are the most likely to receive an inheritance. The figures... Read more

Make a Will and help charity at the same time in Nov

By Lenore Rice In November you can make a Will and have the solicitor fee donated to charity by taking part in Will Aid. This is the 25th year of Will Aid,... Read more

Councils cracking down on care home fee avoidance

By Lenore Rice Councils are said to be paying more attention to the motivation behind transfers of property by older people to their grown up children before they go into care... Read more

Unpaid inheritance tax increases to £400million

By Lenore Rice New figures released by HM Revenue and Customs (HRMC) show that the amount of unpaid inheritance tax has gone up by £100million to a total of £400million compared... Read more

Inheritances dropped to sort retirement shortfall

By Lenore Rice An increasing number of people are having to drop their plans to leave an inheritance to their children as they begin to count the cost of retirement, says... Read more

7 out of 10 people who died last year had no Will

By Lenore Rice Seven out of ten people who died last year did not have a Will according to charity Carers Trust. People who die without a valid Will are said to... Read more

Care home costs reduce chance of inheritance

By Lenore Rice A new report claims that 75 per cent of people in England and Wales that go into a care home will see all their savings and property value... Read more

IHT simplification proposal anything but simple

By Lenore Rice The HMRC has supposedly been trying to simplify the UK tax system, generally considered to be one of the most complex in Europe, if not the world. It's... Read more

Fewer people to leave their property as inheritance

By Lenore Rice The number of people in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK planning to sell or rent their property in order to fund their retirement has risen... Read more

Wording of Will prompts Gov u-turn on cash gift

By Lenore Rice David Cameron has said that £520,000 left as a bequest to the government by Joan Edwards in her Will is now going to be passed to the Treasury,... Read more

Inheritance tax payments at 6 year high

By Lenore Rice The amount of inheritance tax paid by people in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK rose for a third consecutive year in 2012, taking it to... Read more

Couple escape jail sentence over Will forgery

By Lenore Rice A couple have evaded a prison sentence in respect of forging a Will and trying to defraud their own son of an inheritance, largely on the basis of... Read more

Over half of millionaires don't have up to date Will

One of the most common reasons given by the 70 per cent of the adult population in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK for not making a Will... Read more

Heir Hunter posed as solicitor to claim house

When the neighbours of a deceased pensioner confronted a woman with a locksmith changing the locks on his house she told them she was a solicitor and handed over a... Read more

Executor stole money meant for children's charity

Christopher MacKnight, aged 53, has been given a 27 month prison sentence for abusing his position as executor of his best friend's estate to steal money intended for a children's... Read more

Power of attorney used to steal from stepmother

A 66 year old woman has pleaded guilty to using a power of attorney to steal over £10,100 from her stepmother. Ann Fawcet and her husband were given power of attorney... Read more

Will upheld despite declining mental powers

A son has lost his attempt to overturn a Will signed by his mother at the age of 88 without legal advice and without a medical check, despite the judge... Read more

Increased living costs reducing inheritances

Fewer people in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK will be benefiting from inheritances according to Aviva's Real Retirement report. Just over one in five people who are approaching... Read more

Children fail to revoke Will leaving £6.7m to charity

The four children of multi-millionaire Alfred Stewart have failed in their bid to revoke his Will leaving almost all of his £6.7million estate to charity, and nothing to them. The children... Read more

Woman steals £120,000 from great uncles account

A woman who was put in a position of trust with access to her 84-year-old Great Uncle's life savings admitted to embezzling just under £120,000 to fund her gambling addiction. Franciso... Read more

Couple lose £500k legacy as Will ruled invalid

A couple have lost out on a £500,000 legacy in a Will made by a woman who they say decided to cut her family out of any inheritance because they... Read more

Jail sentence for aunt who stole inheritance

Carole Walker, aged 57, has been sentenced to eight months in prison after admitting the theft of over £30,000 inheritance money that was intended for her niece. Ms Walker was named... Read more

New Years resolutions more finance orientated

The past couple of years have seen a change to the most popular New Years resolutions made by people in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK. While dieting, exercise... Read more

More people living to 100 alters inheritance plans

A new report by the Office for National Statistics shows that more people in England and Wales are living beyond 100 years, raising more questions on the affect of an... Read more

Daughter says inheritance actually for cats

A woman who has been accused of concealing a  £50,000 inheritance gift from her Mum in order not to lose her pension credits says the gift was actually for her... Read more

Investment risks farmland IHT exemption

The increasing practice of investors purchasing farming land to avoid inheritance tax could result in the IHT exemption on farmland being removed altogether by HMRC. In some areas farmers are finding... Read more

Secret Millionaire loses inheritance row

John Griffin, aged 68, was one of the most generous donors to appear on the Channel 4 show 'Secret Millionaire', which involves wealthy people going undercover in underprivileged areas only... Read more

Pensioners' life expectancy has improved, data shows

Future trust and estate planning is likely to be impacted upon by the changing circumstances surrounding pensioners, who are said to be living more fulfilling lives compared to ten years... Read more

Singles ignore writing a will

Concerns over estate planning have been raised by Standard Life, which says that one in five single people risk having their dying wishes neglected because they do not have a... Read more

House-sharing to avoid inheritance tax not recommended

Going into house-sharing arrangements to avoid the inheritance tax (IHT) implications after death can bring all sorts of complications, solicitors in Belfast may want to know.According to Equity Partners, pensioners... Read more

Labour MP blames lack of support for failure of inheritance tax amendment

A Labour MP's proposal that siblings should be entitled to the same inheritance tax break as a married couple has been discarded.The Guardian reports that Frank Field's suggested amendment to... Read more

Civil partnership split warning

People considering entering into a civil partnership in Northern Ireland should consult solicitors and plan carefully before taking the vows, it has been advised.According to the Law Society, entering into... Read more

Super-rich 'still hunting for NI property'

The very wealthy are still on the look-out for new large luxury homes, an architect has claimed.Des Ewing said that interest in his homes is so high that he has... Read more

Wills 'need to be regularly reviewed'

Wills and trusts need to be regularly reviewed as the inheritance people are able to leave changes, according to the Law Society.The society claims that solicitors need to be consulted... Read more

Care home financial advice 'essential'

Taking financial advice about retirement and care home provision is "essential", Saga has claimed.The magazine, insurance and holidays provider for the over-50s, has welcomed Gordon Brown's review on social care... Read more

Having a will ensures money passes to correct inheritors

Making a will is essential for those who want to influence what happens to their estate after they die, a financial expert has advised.David Kuo, head of finance at,... Read more

IHT problems for unmarried couples

Co-habiting couples who are not married or in civil partnerships are not entitled to the same inheritance tax (IHT) benefits as those who are, a firm of independent financial advisors... Read more

Solicitors 'essential' for co-buyers

With property prices in Belfast and Northern Ireland remaining high, many people may be tempted to buy a house with other people, but this should be entered into with caution... Read more

Widow forced to settle with husband's ex-wife

Solicitors in Northern Ireland will have watched an unusual case with interest, as a woman whose husband died only hours after they married has been forced to pay £100,000 to... Read more

Darling pledges inheritance tax cut

Chancellor Alistair Darling has announced that inheritance tax will be cut in his first pre-Budget Report.Solicitors in Northern Ireland may see more clients looking to buy houses as the inheritance... Read more

Clever couples can avoid high IHT

Married couples or those in a civil partnership can help to cut inheritance tax (IHT) by writing a nil rate band discretionary trust will, Willcare has advised. Couples in Britain... Read more

Inheritance 'vital financial support'

An increasing number of people across the UK and Northern Ireland are planning to fall back on inheritance windfalls to support them and their children, it has been claimed.Solicitors in... Read more