David Hall
David Hall
Deputy Head of Legal Services and Head of Private Client

Tending to your finances is the best way to protect what you have and give the best opportunity to your family and loved ones

Our team are here to help you plan for now, for your future, and for your family's future.  You can talk to us in strict confidence and we pride ourselves on handling all work with consideration and collaboration.  Our breadth and depth of experience mean there is no issue we cannot handle.  Look us up in the 'About Us' section, find a local solicitor through this site, or call us now to be put in touch with someone near you.

Whatever stage you are in, whether just considering options or past the point of reconcilliation, we can offer supportive and sympathetic advice.

If possible we can help you through a divorce via Mediation or Collaborative Law.  If necessary we can help protect your assets and take your interests to court.

Either way, you can talk to us in the strictest confidence, and we will work with you closely and in your interests.


Meta Panchamia
Meta Panchamia
Partner, Chartered Legal Executive. Head of Commercial Litigation and Insolvency

At MW we have expert Solicitors who can help with Personal Insolvency issues including, assisting insolvency practitioners in realising a debtor’s assets be that by repossession and sale of the bankrupt’s home or recovery of assets which have been dissipated by the bankrupt prior to, or following the bankruptcy order.

Sometimes these applications can involve sensitive exceptional circumstances and complex disputes relating to exoneration or division of the beneficial interest and our team has the right level of experience to assist. The team is also able to advise insolvency practitioners on all types of antecedent transactions, IPOs, general litigation which the bankrupt may have been involved in before the Order, pension issues, annulments and IVAs. 

The team can also assist a Bankrupt or other parties when faced with the above issues and require guidance and assistance as to the best form of settlement or whether the claim made is defendable.

Corporate Insolvency

Our Corporate Insolvency expertise includes assisting insolvency practitioners in antecedent transaction claims such as preferences, undervalue claims or disposition of property along with directors disqualification proceedings and further more complex issues such as wrongful/fraudulent trading or misfeasance claims. Often, matters involve a high level of investigation before a case can be commenced and we have the relevant experience to assist in those investigations to conclude quickly and efficient that there is a case and that commercially, it is viable.

We can advise and assist in placing a company into Administration for directors or creditors, we also advise on all aspects relating to  CVAs, Creditors Voluntary and Compulsory Liquidations and Members Liquidations along with LPA Receiverships.

The team can also assist directors or other parties when faced with the above issues and require guidance and assistance as to the best form of settlement or whether the claim made by the Insolvency Practitioner is defendable.

Creditors

We can also offer services to creditors that will enable them to monitor any bad debts.  As a creditor, advice may be needed as to the best way to approach a bad debt or a debtor who has financial issues.  We can assist and advise on the best course of action. This may include issuing a statutory demand, a bankruptcy petition or winding up petition.  It may be that other processes are best placed to recover the debt and again we can assist you with that.

Creditors may also require advice when the debtor has become insolvent and is subject to or about to be subject to an insolvency process.  Often creditors consider at that stage that they have lost their money but that is very often wrong and we can advice on how a good recovery could be achieved by ensuring that the insolvency practitioner is able to recovery all the assets available to him.

Commercial Litigation

Our team is able to assist in commercial disputes from collection of debts through to injunctions and have a wealth of experience in dealing with high value and complex claims.

We have particular expertise in contractual debt claims along with secondary security actions and are able to assist large corporates or indeed individuals facing such disputes. We have the commercial aptitude to ensure any dispute is dealt with cost effectively always maintaining clear transparency on costs and this is achieved through the recognition of keeping the client aware of every step and the associated costs.

We have experience in mediations and alternative dispute resolution schemes to ensure the right result is met for the client at all times.

Sometimes you need to do more than write a will to protect your interests. This can be particularly true around inheritance tax and other claims on your property and assets

You want to pass on as much as you can to the people you care for, and we can help.  We can work in the strictest confidence to do a thorough review of your estate and help you plan appropriately.  It is too important to leave to chance, and often too complicated or stressful to attempt alone. We will work with you closely and sympathetically to ensure you, your assets and your wishes are all well protected.

The Court of Protection (COP) is a Court which looks after the interests of people who lack mental capacity.

What matters do the Court of Protection deal with?

The most common function of the COP is to appoint someone (known as a Deputy) to manage a persons financial affairs or to make health and welfare decisions, for people who lack the capacity to do so themselves.  They also deal with disputed matters involving Attorneys and Deputies such as:

Allegations of Attorneys/Deputies not acting in the best interests of the person who lacks capacity

Sometimes people will “gift” money to themselves as an Attorney or Deputy.  Often, this is done innocently or in ignorance of the rules. Sadly, sometimes an Attorney or Deputy will simply use the money for their own personal gain.  If you believe that this is the case, you should report this to the Office of the Public Guardian and they will investigate this as a potential abuse.

If you have concerns that an Attorney or Deputy is acting inappropriately or even stealing money, you can call or email us for a FREE CASE REVIEW including guidance on how best to proceed.

Objections to the registration of a Lasting Power of Attorney or Enduring Power of Attorney

Often people will receive notice that a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) or an Enduring Power of Attorney (EPA) is being registered and they wish to object to this. This most commonly occurs when the maker of a Lasting Power of Attorney lacked the capacity to make the LPA or EPA in the first place, has been pressured into doing so or because the Attorney is unsuitable to take up the role.

If you are trying to register a Lasting Power of Attorney or an Enduring Power of Attorney and an objection has been made we can assist you with complying with all of the Court requirements and guide you through the process.  If you want to raise an objection to the registration of an LPA or EPA we can advise you on your options for doing so. Call or email us today for a FREE CASE REVIEW.

Statutory Will applications

A Statutory Will is one made by the Court of Protection on behalf of someone who does not have capacity to make a Will for themselves. The COP needs to approve the Will before it can be executed to be sure that the contents of the Will are in the best interests of the person who lacks capacity.  Applications for approval of Statutory Wills are commonly made if someone does not have a Will already or if they had previously gifted a property in a Will which has subsequently been sold to pay for care home fees or if they have had no contact with any of the named beneficiaries for many years.

Where all parties are in agreement applications are made without the need for any Court hearings.  However, those materially affected by the new Will need to be given notice of the application giving them the opportunity to raise objections if necessary.  These cases can therefore become contentious even when this is not anticipated at the outset.

It is advisable to instruct Specialist Inheritance Lawyers, to guide you through the process and ensure that the complex aspects of such cases are complied with properly.

If you have received notice of an application for approval of a Statutory Will and are unsure whether or not to raise an objection, or if you have made an application where someone is now objecting then call or email us for a FREE CASE REVIEW and we can advise you on your options for raising or defending objections.

Funding

In Court of Protection cases, unless they relate to health and welfare matters, the costs are paid from the funds of the person who lacks capacity. However, the Court does have power to make costs orders so that if they feel that one party has been acting maliciously, they can make that party pay all of the costs involved.

If you are unsure of how your potential COP case could be funded then call or email us for a FREE CASE REVIEW today.

Our Successes

Public Guardian v Marvin [2014] EWCOP 47

In this case, our Specialist Inheritance Lawyers acted for the Respondent who was the appointed Attorney for his Father, dealing with both his property and financial affairs as well as his health and welfare.  Social Services reported our client to the Office of the Public Guardian as they alleged that he was not acting in his Father’s best interests in managing his financial affairs and making decisions regarding his health and welfare. The Office of the Public Guardian were trying to revoke the Powers of Attorney and appoint an independent Deputy.

We argued that whilst the Respondent had not technically had the power to act in the way that he did, this was not done maliciously and nor did the Respondent receive any personal gain from his actions. This argument was accepted by the Court and the judge allowed the Health and Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney to continue.  He also accepted our request that the respondent be appointed a Deputy jointly with a partner of McMillan Williams Solicitors Limited.  The judge admitted that his decision was

“…unusual… and should not be regarded as setting a precedent for other cases”.

This case shows how, with the use of our Specialist Inheritance Lawyers, we work hard to achieve the best results for our clients, even those which the Court wouldn’t normally order.

If you believe you have an unusual case and would like some guidance on how best to approach it then call or email our Specialist Inheritance Lawyers today for your FREE CASE REVIEW.

Are you an executor who has reached deadlock with your co-executor and you don’t know how to break through this in order to complete the administration of the estate?

Are you an executor who has a difficult beneficiary who is preventing you from completing the administration of the estate?

Are you a beneficiary who feels that you are not being kept informed by the executor and/or that they are not administering the estate correctly?

We frequently act for both executors and beneficiaries when disputes arise which prevent the completion of the administration of the estate. We have considerable experience in:

  • breaking through dead-locks between co-executors
  • breaking through dead-locks between executors and beneficiaries
  • pursuing claims to remove executors who have acted in breach of their duties and replacing them with executors who comply with their duties to complete the administration of the estate.

These cases can be funded on a deferred funding basis which means that you would not need to find monies for legal costs up front.

As these disputes are varied and often case-specific please call or email our specialist inheritance lawyers today for a FREE CASE REVIEW so that we can advise you of the options available in your circumstances.

 

If a person dies without leaving a Will they are deemed to have died Intestate and the Intestacy Rules apply (as outlined in the Administration of Estates Act 1925). Under the Intestacy Rules, as recently amended by the Inheritance and Trustees’ Powers Act 2014, the following people will inherit a person’s estate in the following order (and be entitled to apply to be Administrator – which is the intestate version of an Executor):

1. Spouse* and no children - all to the Spouse regardless of the value of the estate

2. Spouse and children - the Spouse receives the first £250,000, the personal possessions and half of whatever the remainder of the estate is over £250,000 absolutely; the remaining half over £250,000 passes to the children** in equal shares

3. No Spouse but with children - all to the children in equal shares (or their issue if a child has pre-deceased).

4. No Spouse or children - the estate is gifted to the following relatives in the following order (i.e. it will only go to a relative in a category below if the category above does not exist):-

  a. Parents

  b. Siblings or their issue

  c. Half-Sibling or their issue

  d. Grandparents

  e. Uncles or Aunts or their issue

  f. Half-Uncles or Aunts or their issue

5. If none of the above - the Estate passes to the Crown (the government!)

* also includes Civil Partners

** also includes their children (issue) in equal shares if the child pre-deceases the deceased (so on down the generations)

The above represents the latest position following a lengthy review of current inheritance laws so that a further change in the Intestacy Rules is not expected for many years. You can still see that there are a number of people who do not benefit from a deceased person’s estate under the Intestacy Rules (such as step-children and partners) and this is where the Inheritance (Provision for Family & Dependants) Act 1975 can step in to save the day. You may still be eligible to bring a claim under The 1975 Inheritance Act.


Bellamy Forde
Bellamy Forde
Partner and Head of Civil Litigation

Sometimes disagreements cannot be settled amicably, and it is at those times when a good defense matters most.

It is likely a very stressful time and our specialist Civil Litigation team have the breadth of knowledge and depth of experience to handle any type of case, any time of day, anywhere in the country.

Whether you plan to open a Trust or have become a Trustee, you have new responsibilities that require exceptionally careful consideration.

McMillan Williams can advise you on how a trust works and the tax implications of setting one up, whatever your circumstances. 

We can also review a trust and give you a clear understanding of your legal duties and responsibilities. 

You can talk to us in the strictest confidence and we will work with you closely and collaboratively.

Whether you plan to open a Trust or have become a Trustee, you have new responsibilities that require exceptionally careful consideration.

McMillan Williams can advise you on how a trust works and the tax implications of setting one up, whatever your circumstances.  We can also review a trust and give you a clear understanding of your legal duties and responsibilities.  You can talk to us in the strictest confidence and we will work with you closely and collaboratively.

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