What does Estate Planning involve?

Estate Planning is a catch all term for putting your affairs in order as you plan for later life, or the end of your life.

It covers everything from establishing who you would like to have as an Attorney if you lose mental capacity; to storing your original property and estate documents somewhere safe and accessible for your Executors; to working out who should benefit under your Will and how best to plan in order to limit Inheritance Tax liabilities.

All the services we offer contribute to the proper planning of your estate.

We can set up trusts to facilitate tax efficient gifts, we can draw up your Will, we can advise you about planning and paying for long term care, or help you to secure the best fit pre-paid funeral plan to ensure your wishes are met in this respect.

But I don’t need to think about this yet, I’m too…

…young? confused? upset by thinking about it? busy keeping on top of life?

We know!  But here’s why it’s really important to plan.

Accidents and illness do happen.  If something causes you to lose your mental capacity, and you are no longer able to communicate with your treating doctors or have a say in how you are cared for and where you live, you want to know that someone you trust will be in charge.  For this reason, Lasting Powers of Attorney are really important, in delegating your ‘voice’ to that person. If you have not done this yourself, the Court will make the appointment instead.

In relation to medical care, you can also state your wishes in relation to life prolonging treatment by writing an Advance Decision.  You can use an Advance Statement to record your wishes about ongoing personal care and where you would like to live, in case you lose capacity to communicate these views.

When life comes to an end, our money and possessions, however little, can only be shared out in accordance with our wishes if we have written a Will.  If there’s no Will, they are distributed according to the Intestacy Rules. These are set out by the Government and those you love have no power to change these Rules.

You may want to use your Will to state who will care for your children, how much of your money they should inherit and when.  In circumstances where a child under 18 loses their parents, the Court decides who will look after them and the Court controls their inheritance until they are 18.

Services

Wills 

  

Costs

Fixed fees are listed on the service pages where they apply. Some of our work requires us to understand your requirements before we can provide a cost estimate.

Please contact us by email or telephone to discuss your estate planning aims and needs.  We will provide a cost estimate before commencing our work for you.

Bicester, Buckingham & now Oxford!

Bicester Wills & Probate launched in 2010, and opened an office in Buckingham in 2018. We are delighted to now also have an office in Headington, Oxford. We look forward to servicing the Wills & Probate needs of the local community in Oxford.

Probate fees are on the increase

Currently, there is a set fee of £215 to obtain a Grant of Probate. The new fee to be charged for Probate applications will be calculated on a sliding scale, probably around 0.5% of the value of the estate. This will have a huge impact on the costs of most probate applications, so what can you do about it?

How can my wishes be known if I’m too ill to communicate?

If we become too ill to speak for ourselves, we are deemed to have ‘lost capacity’. Treatment and general care decisions will be made by our medical team and clinicians based on our best interests. Let’s look at the role of Health and Welfare LPAs.

Who’ll manage my money?

The question of who’ll keep our finances in order if we have lost our capacity to manage them is a huge one! It’s important to have someone we trust. Everyone’s heard scare stories of people targeted by unscrupulous ‘good samaritans’ who clear out their bank accounts… It doesn’t have to be that way.

Find out more about our services on this website.

Book an appointment or telephone us to find out how we can best help you.