Estate Planning Solicitors

Estate Planning Lawyers London

Our estate planning solicitors help individuals protect their money and assets and safeguard the future of their families. Efficient estate planning is for everyone – whatever they are worth.

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  • “The ‘approachable, friendly and motivated’  team receives a steady flow of instructions from high-net-worth individuals and families on an array of tax planning, wealth preservation, estate and succession planning issues.”

  • “Jan is excellent with clients. She approaches complex cases with confidence and skill”

Why consider estate planning? 

Our estate plan lawyers can help protect your cash and assets during your lifetime and after death, it’s wise to do some careful forward-thinking and find out how estate planning can help you. 

Effective estate planning will help you make the most of your hard-earned cash and reduce the inheritance tax your estate may have to pay – ensuring your loved ones inherit as much of your estate as possible. 

The specialist team at Osbornes Law offers incisive and expert guidance on how best to plan and protect your money through robust estate planning and tax mitigation.

How can our estate planning solicitors help you?

The advantage of a robust estate planning strategy is not just about passing on your assets when you die, it’s about making the most of your money today. Succession and estate planning is for everyone, not only for the wealthy. 

However much you’re worth, it’s sensible to take expert advice on what steps you can take to protect your assets and mitigate any future inheritance tax bill. 

Our specialist estate planning solicitors are experienced in examining the whole picture and taking a holistic approach to our clients’ property and assets. We will discuss your family circumstances, and your current financial needs and determine what your goals are.  Once we have the full picture, we will help you identify how best to protect your money and your loved ones. 

Estate planning services:

Making a will

An up-to-date will is one of the most effective ways to control your estate – without an effective will, the intestacy rules govern who inherits the estate. This means your beneficiaries may not be those who you would have chosen. We will advise you on making an effective will to ensure your assets are dealt with tax-efficiently – freeing up as much as possible for your family. Making a will is especially important if you have assets in more than one country as the intestacy rules that each country will apply could conflict and create confusion.

Inheritance tax planning

More estates than ever are liable for inheritance tax on death. The inheritance tax threshold (known as the ‘nil-rate band’) has remained static at £325,000 since 2009, while the value of property and other assets has significantly increased. Tax may be charged at 40% of the value of an estate that exceeds this threshold. The inheritance tax rules are complex, particularly if you own business assets or foreign property. Our experts can help you reduce the tax bill on death, for example, by utilising available exemptions, or clever utilising of the nil rate band, such as creating a nil rate band trust. We can also help with filing inheritance tax returns.

International estate planning

If you are one of the growing numbers of individuals owning property abroad, our solicitors are experts in managing international assets and navigating tax and property laws in foreign jurisdictions. This includes efficient tax planning and advising on the transfer of assets between countries to protect your global wealth.

Tax planning

We also advise on capital gains and income tax for individuals, businesses, landed estates, professionals and entrepreneurs on matters including business reliefs and exemptions, retirement planning and dealing with income tax issues with HM Revenue & Customs.

Trusts

We can help you set up a tax-efficient trust to benefit, eg your grandchildren, under the careful management of your trustees. Putting money or property into trust effectively ring-fences it from the rest of your estate for inheritance tax purposes if you survive for 7 years, so significant tax savings can be had. You can appoint trusted individuals as your trustees or Osbornes as your professional trustee if you choose.

Residence nil rate band

This is a tax allowance (worth £175,000 in 2020/2021 and rising in line with the Consumer Prices Index thereafter) which your estate can claim if you leave a residential property (which has been your main residence at some point) to your direct descendants which include your biological children, step children, adopted children or foster children, and their lineal descendants. If your estate is worth more than £2m, the residence nil rate band will be tapered away by £1 for every £2 that the net estate exceeds that amount. It’s important to note that the relief is restricted to a single residence only.

Wills containing a nil rate band trust can sometimes be a useful way of tax planning but sometimes they are unnecessary and so the trust can be terminated. It is usually important to terminate such a trust within 2 years of the date of death. We can advise on the estate’s circumstances and whether it is a good idea to retain the trust.

Lifetime giving

Consider making financial gifts to family or charity if surplus funds are available. This will have the effect of depleting the total value of your estate for inheritance tax purposes. The rules are fairly complex but our specialists will explain how lifetime giving can work for you and your estate and what exemptions could apply. If you’re particularly wealthy, you could consider how effective philanthropy can save significant tax while benefiting society.

Read our blog post Gifting property to children

Charitable gifts and trusts

You may be considering making financial or charitable gifts, or even setting up a charitable trust – now and possibly under the terms of your will. With specialist advice and strategic planning, this can be a highly tax-efficient way of disposing of surplus wealth. Tax-efficient giving means a greater sum of money available for those you want to benefit from your wealth. You may be thinking about regular giving or one-off gifts, but we strongly recommend consulting with our specialist wealth planning solicitors before making any gifts and donations.

Read our blog post How to ensure money left in your will goes to the causes you care about

Lasting Powers of Attorney

It’s never too early to appoint attorneys under an LPA. You can nominate trusted attorneys to make decisions on your behalf about your money and assets, for your health and welfare – or both – if you were to become mentally incapacitated and unable to make your own decisions. If you or a loved one needs expert information on how best to protect your property and estate and potentially make significant financial savings.

Care home fees

This is an increasing concern for many clients who are worried their hard earn assets could be eaten up by future care or residential home fees, leaving little for their loved ones. With careful planning, you may be able to structure your property ownership and plan your estate to protect your assets from these potential costs.

Read our blog posts Severance of a joint tenancy and Tenants in Common vs Joint Tenants

Speak to estate planning solicitors near me

For a free initial conversation call 020 7485 8811

Email us Send us an email and we’ll get back to you






    • A private client team offering a range of services to assist with private client matters including trust and probate services. A friendly approach with a keen eye for detail.

      Legal 500 2024

    • I have been a client of this firm for a number of years and been impressed by particular individuals, the care and thoughtfulness with which they have worked.

      Legal 500 2024

    • An efficient firm which provides an excellent service at highly competitive charging rates.

      Legal 500 2024

    • The team receives a steady flow of instructions from high-net-worth individuals and families on an array of tax planning, wealth preservation, estate and succession planning issues

      Legal 500 2024

    • I think this firm has excellent strength and depth in this area, for both contentious and non-contentious work, and they can hold their own against any other firm.

      Legal 500 2024

    • I have found them to be incredibly knowledgeable and pragmatic in settling claims for their clients.

      Legal 500 2024

    • The contested estates team is strong with talented young solicitors doing good quality work

      Legal 500 2024

    • The nimble team acts for a broad range of high-net-worth individuals and families on a variety of complex estate and trust litigation.

      Legal 500 2024

    • Osbornes has a ‘strong private client department’ and ‘the firm seems to be going from strength to strength’.

      Legal 500 2024

    • Thank you for managing my case, following a complete fiasco before I contacted Osbornes Law. I know that the work involved was rather complicated, possibly frustrating and often time consuming. I was impressed with your current knowledge of the case when we had the first meeting at your office. I regard a face-to-face meeting as imperative in developing positive relationships. Members of your team, such as Alex and Ella were impressive too, with their efficient, friendly manner of working.
      I am grateful for your patience, advice and excellent support at a difficult time. Hopefully it won't be necessary to contact you again regarding this matter! I will definitely use Osbornes Law in the future.

      Client

    • "Commitment to the cause, willingness to go the extra mile and complete command of the area mean they always give the right advice and do the best job possible."

      Legal 500 2023

    • "They are completely committed to doing the absolute best they can for every single client. They are bright, knowledgeable and innovative."

      Legal 500 2023

    • "This team perhaps does not have the reputation in this area it ought to have. It quietly handles some very big, high profile disputes. It has an expert team to do so and provides sensible pragmatic advice to its clients."

      Legal 500 2023

    • "The agile team at Osbornes acts for a wide range of high-net-worth individuals and families in complex estate and trust litigation, advising on a wide array of contentious trust and estate matters."

      Legal 500 2023

    • "I wish to thank you for your advice, efficiency and professionalism throughout which has been greatly appreciated."

      Client review

    • "I am proud to be a private client of Osbornes Solicitors LLP, a client of many years. I appreciate the swift and efficient work of the Private Client Department Team."

      Client

    • "Jan Atkinson, with her steely, steady, calming presence, instils confidence in the most highly-strung of us clients. With her masterful knowledge of the law, old and new, and its application, Jan can navigate through the most complex of cases to a successful end."

      Legal 500 2021

    • "I find Osbornes’ client-friendly approach welcoming and refreshing"

      Legal 500 2021

    • "A medium-sized London firm dealing with big litigation and doing it extremely well because of a depth of expertise and experience."

      Legal 500 2021

    • My family had the pleasure of Jan Atkinson working with us on the will and probate issues of [my mother's] estate in Camden and Ireland after she passed on last year. Jan and her assistant(s) offered us a fantastic service at a sad time.

      Client Review

    • "Jan Atkinson stands out for her wide-ranging knowledge and experience of estates; whatever problem you throw at her, she has seen it all before and is able to find a creative and sustainable solution. She has exceptional commitment to her clients and explores every avenue to find the best solution for them"

      Legal 500 2021 - Jan Atkinson

    • The team is very caring, experienced and detailed and was clear about the  next steps and offered very helpful advice and suggestions

      Legal 500

    • Jan Atkinson has extensive experience in private client matters, which underpins her excellent skills in the contentious probate area. Plus she is strong on international matters

      Legal 500 2020 - Jan Atkinson

    • A small but formidable team, punching above its weight. Jan Atkinson is a seasoned pro. Approachable but no push-over

      Legal 500 2020 - Jan Atkinson

    • "They are an outstanding firm to work with. They are consistently impressive in their work."

      Chambers UK

    • "Elspeth Neilson is very reliable and practical."

      The Legal 500

    • "The team frequently deals with cross-border estates for high–net-worth individuals."

      The Legal 500

    • "The team were extremely professional in putting my needs first. There was a joined-up approach to catering for the client, and all lawyers involved were briefed and constructive."

      Chambers UK

    • The situation was handled by your extremely competent, efficient hands - I would not hesitate to recommend Osbornes to others.

      Wills, Probate and Disputed Estate Client

    • "Service prompt and effective. I have absolute confidence in Maggie."

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • I am happy with the service that I got and would recommend you to other potential clients.

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • I found Osbornes always very helpful and efficient.

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • We are very pleased with the services of Osbornes. Highly professional and through with close attention to detail.

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • I would highly recommend Jan Atkinson in any probate matter and Osbornes Solicitors in any other legal matters.

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • Jan Atkinson is a very proficient lady whom I would highly recommend to anyone involved in probates.

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • Thanks for all your work and explaining everything so clearly. For any legal matters in the future I would not hesitate in instructing Osbornes.

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • We have found your service to date as the most informative we have come across.

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • Osbornes Solicitors always responded promptly to any request for information I had.

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • “Geoffrey’s affairs were dealt with just the right combination of friendliness and professionalism, which really helped.”

       

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • Jan Atkinson is confident with a straightforward approach. Her practice covers both contentious and non-contentious matters, including wealth planning and estate administration.

      Chambers UK

    • I would like to thank everyone in my case for the excellent job!

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates client

    Accreditations

    • Times best law firm 2024
    • Spears 500 logo
    • legal 500 leading firm
    • chambers logo

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