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Trusts and Estates Law and Tax Journal: May 2016

Peter Nellist highlights a key exemption to inheritance tax and discusses the importance of a lasting power of attorney

Whenever an adviser meets a new client there are three matters that should always be on the agenda: does the client have in place an up-to-date will, a lasting power of attorney and, for inheritance tax purposes, a letter documenting an intention to gift surplus income?

In Ong v Ping the court considered a trust where the property held had not been identified. Oliver Hilton explains

It is an imperative requirement for a valid and enforceable trust of land that the land in question is defined with sufficient certainty and that, although the declaration need not itself be in writing, the trust and its terms (and thus the definition of the property) must be supported by evidence under signature for the purposes of s53(1)(b) of the Law Property Act 1925.

Geoffrey Shindler puts his mind to the neglected question of how Brexit would affect the trusts and estates world

Everybody else in the world seems to have a view about Brexit. Why should trust and estate practitioners not join the party? As Hamlet might have put it; to Brexit or not to Brexit, that is the question. Should those of us practising in our area of the trade have a view – not an official one – but is there one that comes to mind when you consider the work that we do? Are we better off in Europe, economically speaking rather than geographically, or is it a matter of indifference whether we are or we are not?

Alexander Learmonth gives the lowdown on the probate fees consultation

What fantastic value for money we get from the Probate Registry! For just £155, the Registry will receive our oath, check it, and issue us with a sealed grant of probate or letters of administration. Or, if we do not want to use a solicitor to make our application for a grant for us, we have to pay a mere £60 extra to have our application checked for us. We do not even pay extra for the more complicated intestacy cases. And if the estate for which we need a grant is worth less than £5,000, the fee is waived. How about that for fair dos?

Carey Olsen

Russell Clark and Paula Fry discuss the Royal Court of Guernsey’s guidance on the applicable test for the removal of a protector in Re the K Trust

The Royal Court of Guernsey has considered, for the first time, an application for the summary removal of a protector on the grounds that her continuation in office would adversely impact on the welfare of the beneficiaries and the competent administration of the trust. In the process some novel points were deliberated including:

Laytons

Simrun Garcha provides a round-up of relevant Charity Commission decisions

The Charity Commission, as the sole, independent regulator of charities in England and Wales makes a plethora of formal decisions each year ranging from registering organisations as charities, opening statutory inquiries into existing charities, amending charities’ governing documents and considering requests to remove charities from the Register of Charities.

Matthew Howson examines the lessons from Winkler v Shamoon [2016]

Sami Shamoon (Mr Shamoon) had a remarkable life. Born in the 1930s to an Iraqi Jewish family, he spent his life as a refugee: first to Iran, and then, following the revolution, to London. Despite this he built a £1bn empire in pharmaceuticals, iron ore, oil pipelines and the largest citrus fruit growers in Israel. He ended his life in 2009 as one of Israel’s richest men, living in the orphanage he founded.