June 13, 2020

The Lifetime Planning Service At Holmes & Hills Solicitors

Holmes & Hills Solicitors offers a Lifetime Planning service to clients that provides clients with a combined Premium Will service and Lasting Powers of Attorney (Health and Welfare as well as Property and Financial Affairs).

The Lifetime Planning service provides clients with the advice, guidance and professional drafted legal documents they need to plan for their future and protect their and their loved ones' interests. 

To illustrate a typical example of circumstances in which the Lifetime Planning service would be recommended, please read the below, fictional case study.

Carol and Tony married in 2013.  They both have two children from previous relationships. They each contributed to the purchase of their home. They made their Will shortly after their marriage and left everything to each other on the first death and then divided everything equally between the four children…” so that there wouldn’t be any arguments”. They now have 2 grandchildren between them.  Recently, they learned from a friend that following the death of his wife he has a new partner who has moved in with him. He intends to change his Will to leave everything to her and then to just his own two children if she dies before him. Carol and Tony are upset to hear this.

Carol and Tony have decided to update their Wills to include legacies to their grandchildren and any future grandchildren they may have. As with most people in these circumstances, they tell the story about their friend to the solicitor at the appointment and try to allay each other’s fears by saying “we would never leave out each other’s children or leave the house to a new partner”.

How Holmes & Hills Solicitors can help

The solicitor suggests that she can make their Wills in a way that would ensure the survivor of them will be able to continue to live in their home (or move if they wish) and when the survivor dies, their respective shares in the property will pass to their own children. For example, if Carol died first, Tony would be able to continue live in their home after Carol’s death (or move if he wanted to) and when Tony died, Carol’s children would receive the net proceeds of sale of her half of the property and Tony’s children the net proceeds of his half of the property. Carol and Tony are pleased with this suggestion as it affords them both protection and instructs the solicitor to draft Wills for them in these terms.

Carol and Tony go on to as the solicitor if they have ‘everything sorted?’ The solicitor then turns to lifetime planning matters, asking if they have made ‘Powers of Attorney?’  Tony jokes that although Carol teases him about his memory, he is still perfectly capable of managing his own finances and why would he need one at this stage of his life?They are asked to consider the following:

  • What would happen in the event one of them had, for example, an accident or a health issue that affected their physical capabilities, or became mentally incapable of being able to manage their own finances – who would deal with their financial affairs in such circumstances?
  • If they were in the process of selling their home or wished to do so and any of the above occurred to either one of them, it would not be possible for the other to sign the contract to sell the property on their own behalf and that of the one who had become incapacitated.

Carol and Tony consider the questions carefully, in their own time, following the meeting. They decide that they would like to put the necessary provisions in place so that if the physical or mental health of either one of them suddenly changed for either reason, or slowly deteriorated, this would not cause unnecessary hardship and difficulty for the other, beyond what they would already be experiencing in such circumstances. They therefore have another conversation with their solicitor at Holmes & Hills and each have Health and Welfare as well as Property and Financial Affairs Lasting Powers of Attorney prepared, certified and registered. 

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Vanessa Santomauro

Senior Solicitor


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