Declarations of Trust: What are they and when should you be making them

Declarations of Trust are legally binding documents that are used to set out the interests of parties where property is owned by more than one person. A Declaration of Trust can for example be entered into by couples purchasing their first home, when a partner moves into an existing home, or when pr....

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Luxury apartment in one of London’s finest and most expensive locations available to buy for less than £100,000 BUT there is a catch….

Would you like to live in one of London’s most exclusive locations and be able to count Nigella Lawson and the Duchess of York, Sarah Ferguson as one of your neighbours? Well now you can, as a property in the illustrious Belgravia area is being sold at auction with a guide price of just £90,000. ....

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If my wife starts divorce proceedings, will she get a better financial settlement?

In short, no. In most cases, it is irrelevant who divorces who. It is highly unlikely that it will make any difference to the final financial settlement made. The only circumstances where making the first move in a divorce action could be important is when there’s a choice to be made as to whic....

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My doctor isn’t listening to me, what can I do?

It can be distressing to feel that your doctor isn't listening to you, so here are some tips which can help in handling the situation. You should never be afraid to speak up if you feel something is wrong. We all know the NHS is under extreme pressure, especially during the winter months, but howeve....

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I’m looking for a property, and I see that flats are leasehold. What does this mean for me?

As you’ve noticed, flats are commonly owned on a leasehold basis, while houses are normally sold as freehold properties. In the UK, more than 2m people own leasehold properties. Many leases are granted on a 99-year basis, while some can run for as long as 999 years. If you buy a leasehold prope....

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A Planning Application has been made near my home/business premises, what can I do?

It can come as a shock to know that a Planning Application has been made near your home or business premises. Your first reaction might well be panic and a feeling of helplessness, and you may feel that if it goes ahead it will cause you problems and reduce the value of your property. The best advic....

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My aunt died and left everything to me in her Will, so why are the bank asking for probate?

It's good news that your aunt took the important step of making a Will, as this makes the administration of the estate much more straightforward. In making her Will, your aunt will have appointed someone to act as her Executor. There may be more than one Executor, and they will be named in the Will.....

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My child doesn’t live with me, what rights do I have regarding their upbringing, including their health and education?

Firstly, you are not alone; every year, 12,000 couples with children decide to live apart. To answer this question, it's important to understand a little about the legal concept of parental responsibility and the duties and rights that this gives parents.   Who has responsibility? Parental....

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When should I tell the utility companies I’m moving house?

There’s an awful lot to think about when moving house, and most people end up compiling a very long ‘to do’ list. When it comes to dealing with the utility companies, like your energy supplier and your water company, here are a few hints and tips to ensure the move goes as smoothly as possible....

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If I lost mental capacity, could my husband just deal with everything on my behalf?

This is a question that we often get asked. Many people automatically assume that if there came a time when they lacked mental capacity, then their husband, family member or friend could simply step in and act on their behalf. However, this isn’t the case. By 2021, the Alzheimer’s Society pre....

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I’ve heard the term ‘Permitted Development’, what does it mean?

 In a move designed to simplify and streamline the planning process, under what’s called ‘Permitted Development Rights’, the government allows you to undertake certain types of building projects on your property without needing to apply for planning permission. Points to bear in ....

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Can I get copies of my medical records?

Yes, you can. Everybody has the right to access their medical records. You are entitled to see your private health records as well as your NHS records. If you want another person to access your records on your behalf, you will need to authorise them to do so. You don’t have to explain why you w....

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Inheritance Tax – how will it affect my family?

Put simply, Inheritance Tax (IHT) is a tax on money, property, savings, investments and possessions you leave behind when you die. The continued rise in house prices has meant that the number of families paying IHT has grown, with many facing a mounting IHT liability simply because they own a fam....

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Now that I’m divorced, can I change my name back to my maiden name?

The short answer is yes, you can. Many women no longer want to be known by their former husband's name after their divorce. You are not required by law to change your name back to your maiden name, but the opportunity is there for you to do so if you wish. If your married name was exactly the sam....

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What is a covenant?

Moving house, as we all know, can be a very stressful time. Most people assume that once they've purchased a property they can relax as they are free to do what they like with it. They know they might need planning permission or building regulation approval from the local council before they do thin....

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What is a Section 106 Agreement?

You might come across this term in connection with planning permission for a new building development in your area, a proposed supermarket or a housing project for example. Section 106 Agreements, commonly referred to as ‘developer contributions’, are governed by the Town and Country Planning Ac....

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Common Law Spouses

  We're not married, but we've been together for 25 years. When I die will my partner inherit? Many people believe that there is a 'common-law spouse' status in UK law, but in fact this is a myth and doesn't exist. So, when one partner in a cohabiting couple dies without leaving a valid Will,....

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We’ve been married less than a year – can we get a divorce?

The short answer is no, you can't. You have to be married for a least a year before you can start divorce proceedings. Once you have been married for one year, you can start proceedings by issuing a divorce petition. However, there are other steps you can take.   A Separation Agreement In ....

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What happens on my moving day?

You'll remember this day, probably forever, especially if it's your first purchase. It will undoubtedly be a bit stressful, but what will keep you going is the thought that, if everything goes according to plan, by the end of the day you will have the keys to your new property. Just remember to have....

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What can I do if I think a loved one’s death is unusual?

The death of a loved one is a devastating blow that sadly most of us will face at some time in our lives. In most cases, the circumstances and cause are clear, but what should you do if you think that something isn’t right and needs to be investigated?   At home If death is sudden and un....

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