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Check your Will following changes to inheritance law

The Law Society is urging people to consult their solicitor to check their Will is accurate and up-to-date following changes made to inheritance laws. It points out that if you die intestate – without having a valid Will in place – or if your Will has not been written to the required legal standards, then your assets could be divided up in a way that you did not intend.

Plans for digital lasting powers of attorney put on hold

Controversial plans to create a fully digital system for setting up lasting powers of attorney online have been put on hold so that more research can be carried out. The government made the announcement following concerns raised by the Law Society that a fully digital system could be open to abuse. A partial digital system was introduced last year but it still required users to print out and physically sign …Read More

Woman awarded £2,500 after trapping finger in door

A woman has been awarded £2,500 compensation after a toilet door slammed shut on her finger while she was attending a course at a hotel. She went to use the toilet which had to be accessed by opening two doors. As she passed through the second door, it suddenly slammed shut, trapping her middle and ring finger on her right hand. The woman went to hospital where it was revealed …Read More

House prices rose 10.2% in the 12 months to June

House prices rose by 10.2% in the year to June 2014, according to figures from the Office for National Statistics. Prices in England rose by 10.7%. The figure was 6% in Scotland, 4.9% in Northern Ireland and 3.5% in Wales. The survey showed that house prices rose strongly in most parts of the UK, but the highest growth was in London where the annual increase was 19.3%. Without taking London …Read More

Father denied direct contact with son at son’s request

A father has been denied direct contact with his estranged son after the court heard that the boy didn’t want to see him. The boy’s parents had been married but separated shortly after he was born. The father maintained regular contact with his son until the mother became suspicious that the boy had been injured during a contact visit. The mother applied to have the contact order suspended but the …Read More

Disputes over probate triple as people make DIY wills

One of the problems that can arise out of DIY wills was highlighted by data released by the High Court recently. The figures show that the number claims concerning the mishandling a deceased person’s estate has tripled in recent years. There were 368 claims in 2013, while the figure was just 107 in 2012. It’s thought many of the claims were as a result of people having made a DIY …Read More

Slight fall in house prices in July

Figures published by the online estate agency, Rightmove, show that UK house prices dipped slightly in July. The average cost of a home in June was £272,275. This dropped 0.8% to £270,159 in July. Houses in Greater London were the most durable in holding their value, suffering just a 0.4% drop. Properties in the North and East Midlands suffered a 1.9% drop in value. The fall in prices is thought …Read More

Woman wins right to inherit part of her fiancé’s estate

A woman has won the right to inherit some of her partner’s estate, even though she had not lived with him for a long enough period to meet the general legal requirement. The Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 states that if a couple are not married they must live together for at least two years before one of them can claim entitlement to provision from the other’s …Read More

Law firms report a surge in pre-nup agreements

Law firms in England and Wales have reported a rise in the number of couples making pre-nuptial agreements. Pre-nups – as they are commonly known – are drawn up by couples before they get married. They state how assets should be divided if the marriage doesn’t work out. A report in the Daily Telegraph suggests that the rise in numbers is a result of a recommendation from the Law Commission …Read More

Law Society fears online LPAs could be open to abuse

The Law Society has raised concerns that the online service for lasting powers of attorney (LPA) could be open to cases of fraud and abuse. LPAs are well established documents that enable you to nominate someone in advance to look after your affairs should you become incapable of doing so yourself at some point in the future. LPAs can be very helpful but need to be drawn up properly with …Read More