Covid-19 - legal advice for individuals

Losses on asset values after death

One of the effects of the coronavirus pandemic is widespread economic volatility with the result that many people have watched their investments tumble in value over the past couple of months. These market swings will have particular resonance for executors dealing with the estates of the recently deceased.

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Track and Trace: what are the limitations of the new NHS COVID-19 app?

The government’s new NHS COVID-19 app is at the heart of its plans for tackling the coronavirus, lifting the lockdown and helping us all return to normal as soon as possible.

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Varying custody arrangements during lockdown

Good news stories are as rare as hens’ teeth at the moment so it should probably come as no surprise to anyone that tales of bad behaviour by divorced or separated parents over their child contact arrangements were pounced on by news channels in the wake of the government’s ‘stay at home’ guidelines issued on 23 March.

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Can I make decisions now for my future health, welfare and medical treatment?

Some of us may have particular wishes about our personal health and welfare which we would like to record. A health and welfare lasting power of attorney (LPA) or an advanced decision (also known as living will), can be used to ensure your wishes are followed in relation to your health, welfare and medical treatment should you lose capacity to make the decisions yourself in the future.

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A guide to lockdown and its impact on attorneys and deputies

With the likelihood of the lockdown continuing, at least, into the middle of May, we have been considering how both attorneys and deputies (as appointed by the Court of Protection) can continue to fulfil their obligations to the vulnerable people for whom they are responsible.

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The importance of having a Will: is mine valid?

The government have stressed the importance of preparing a Will and ensuring it is kept up-to-date, especially in the challenging times we face due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Those who are involved in the drafting and execution of Wills have been classified as key workers by the government, which highlights the importance of leaving a valid Will and ensuring your affairs are in order.

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Coronavirus FAQ’s: Wills and Powers of Attorney

Uncertainty is one of the many impacts of Coronavirus and it’s creating lots of challenges and questions. We simply don’t know when the lockdown will be lifted, how long the pandemic will last or when normal life will resume. We’ve decided to collate some of our frequently asked questions to hopefully answer some of your queries concerning Wills and Powers of Attorney.

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Tax planning during the coronavirus pandemic

The human and economic damage being wrought by Covid-19 is terrible and should not be understated. The depressed level of asset values and current tax reliefs do though mean that there are planning opportunities for far-sighted taxpayers.

Tax planning during the coronavirus pandemic
Coronavirus: Impact on maintaining contact with care homes residents

A recent Court of Protection decision, BP v Surrey County Council & Anor [2020] EWCOP 17, highlights the difficulties now arising due the Coronavirus pandemic in maintaining contact with our family and friends, especially keeping in touch with those living in care homes.

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Coronavirus: the impact on conveyancing

The news today that the Government has moved to help bring some clarity to the housing market in these unprecedented times has to be welcomed.

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Coronavirus: questions about your family affairs answered?

We have seen a considerable increase in the number of enquiries from clients over the last few days across a range of issues. Therefore, we thought it would be helpful to share these with you to try and allay any concerns you may have during this very uncertain period.

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Coronavirus: If home is not a safe haven for you during the outbreak

The UK is in its second week to stricter self-isolation measures to try and curtail the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The governments restrictions on movement means that victims of domestic abuse are now more vulnerable than ever. Many millions of men and women may be very concerned about what this means for them if they are a victim of domestic abuse.

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Coronavirus: Steps to consider when writing your will

The knock-on effect of the spread of coronavirus on all our lives cannot be underestimated and it is not surprising that many of us are worried about our personal safety and that of our families.

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Coronavirus: Impact on child arrangements

It is currently difficult to address issues caused by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis without worrying that it will have become overtaken by events by the time anyone gets to read it. At the time of writing (25th March) the UK is one day into stricter self-isolating measures in an effort to slow down the spread of the virus.

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Varying a will after someone has died: what are the rules and how can I do it?

The coronavirus pandemic and the fundamental way in which it has changed everyone’s lives so unexpectedly and so quickly means that more people than ever are thinking about their personal circumstances.

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How to make or amend a will during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown

In English law, to make a valid will, a testator must have their signature to it witnessed by two adult independent witnesses. The current social distancing measures together with self-isolation to protect the particularly elderly and vulnerable, therefore present a challenge for private client practitioners: how do we ensure that wills are valid when we can’t stand within 2 metres of one another?

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Coronavirus: why should you write a will?

At present, it’s hard to miss the daily news reports regarding the growing number of cases of coronavirus and, sadly, the subsequent deaths. As the situation and lock-down looks set to continue over the next few weeks, or potentially months, we expect to receive increasing numbers of enquiries about making a will.

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Coronavirus: should I be making a power of attorney?

Given the unprecedented times we are facing due to the Coronavirus pandemic, your thoughts may be ‘how can my financial affairs be dealt with if I am ill or isolating?’ The solution is a power of attorney.

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