My relative has lost capacity and is not capable of managing her finances. Can we put lasting powers of attorney in place to deal with her affairs?
Unfortunately, if an individual has lost capacity it is too late to put lasting powers of attorney in place. However, we are able to apply to the Court of Protection for a deputyship order to obtain legal authority to make decisions on their behalf. This is unfortunately more time consuming and expensive, but it is possible.
I am an executor – what happens now they’ve passed away?
You can renounce your role as executor, but otherwise you can instruct a specialist probate practitioner who can guide you through the process and prepare all the necessary documentation. A specialist will ensure you have fulfilled your duties as an executor through collecting in the assets, settling liabilities, dealing with HMRC and distributing the estate according to the deceased’s will or the rules of intestacy should the deceased not have put a valid will in place.
I want to protect my assets as much as possible for my family. How do I do that?
The best way to do this is to have valid will, ensuring beneficiaries are entitled to receive what you want them to. Other methods include appropriate asset protection trusts and gifts. It is important to note that nothing is bulletproof, but preparation is key.