Wills & Probate Solicitors Warwickshire

Private Client

What Matters to You... Is Important to us

Private Client

At Penmans, our close attention to detail with a caring approach ensures your peace of mind.

Areas we cover include:


Make a Will

 You should make a Will if any of the following apply to you. 

  • You have children aged under 18 and want to appoint a Guardian for them.
  • You want your assets to go to beneficiaries of your choice.
  • You do not want the Government to inherit your assets.
  • You want to reduce the Inheritance Tax payable.
  • You are involved in a business.
  • You want someone of your choice to carry out your wishes as expressed in your Will.
  • You are not married and are living with your Partner.
  • You wish to safeguard your assets by setting up a Trust.
  • You are married and the assets in your sole name exceed £325,000.00.

Our dedicated team of lawyers will work with you to create a professional Will to give you peace of mind


Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)

An LPA is a legal document to allow someone else to make decisions on your behalf, if you cannot do this yourself due to an accident; illness or mental incapacity.

Do I need an LPA?
You will need to make an LPA if you have not made an Enduring Power of Attorney.  If you do not already have an Enduring Power of Attorney, no-one can access your bank accounts or deal with your financial affairs in the event that you are temporarily or permanently incapacitated. Anyone can then apply to the Court to handle your financial affairs (including your bank accounts) but this may not be the person of your choosing.

The Court procedure is a lengthy and very expensive process and you will be liable for the ongoing costs involved.

There are two types of LPA that you can make:

Property & Affairs LPA
This allows your Attorney to deal with your financial affairs (e.g., pay your Bills, etc)

Health & Welfare LPA
This will allow your Attorney to make welfare and healthcare decisions for you if you lack mental capacity yourself. If you wish this can extend to giving or refusing consent to life sustaining treatment.

Declaration of Trust

A Declaration of Trust is a legally binding Deed that clarifies the ownership of a property.

A Declaration of Trust is inexpensive. It can prevent uncertainty and save you thousands of pounds in Court costs in the event of a dispute. You will need to make a Declaration of Trust if you wish to safeguard the financial contribution that you have made towards the purchase or improvement of a property.

This Deed is recommended if any of the following apply to you:

  • Your child is buying a property and you have contributed towards the purchase price.
  • You and your Partner are buying a property and one of you has contributed a greater share of money.
  • You have spent money in improving someone else’s property so that the property has become more valuable.
  • You have loaned some money to a loved one to enable them to buy a property.

Putting your needs first
Our dedicated team of lawyers will work with you to create a professional Declaration of Trust to give you peace of mind.

Estate Administration

The Administration of an Estate is the process to resolve the financial affairs of a loved one after their death. 

 There are many complex issues that can arise when administering an Estate. The process varies depending upon whether your loved one left a legally valid Will. If there is no valid Will, legislation will determine how your loved one’s assets are distributed. This is referred to as the Intestacy Laws.

We will work with you to:

  • Ensure that the correct amount of Inheritance Tax is paid within the deadline so that you do not incur any financial penalties.
  • Claim all the assets belonging to your loved one (including any foreign assets) and settle any debts promptly.
  • Ensure that the assets of your loved one are distributed correctly in accordance with the terms of a legally valid Will or the Intestacy Laws.
  • Explain the best way of dealing with any Trusts created in the Will or under the Intestacy Laws.
  • Advise you on whether a Deed of Variation is appropriate to reduce any Inheritance Tax that may otherwise be payable.

Our dedicated team of lawyers will work with you to provide help; support and advice during this difficult time to give you peace of mind.


Gift of Property

Many people may consider transferring their home from their name into that of another for a variety of reasons.

It is important that the implications of transferring your home are fully understood, so the advantages can be weighed against the disadvantages and you make the appropriate decision.

The possible benefits  

  • A saving of inheritance tax, probate fees and costs upon death. 
  • Avoidance of the need to sell the home to fund residential or nursing home fees and hence protect the family’s inheritance. 
  • Avoidance of the value of the property being taken into account during means testing for benefits or services.

The Possible Risks

  • There may be no inheritance tax savings whilst you continue to reside in the property.
  • You may never need residential or nursing home care.  
  • Statistics show only 6% of people aged 75 – 85 need residential care.
  • If residential care is needed, the Local Authority may only pay for a basic level of care and hence you may be reliant on relatives to top up the fees to enable you to receive a better standard of care.
  • The person to whom you have gifted the property may fail to keep their side of the agreement,
    e.g: (Fail to top up the residential fees; Seek to place you in a residential home prematurely to give them access to the capital in the property; Fail to make adequate provision in their own Will to cover the eventuality that they predecease you; Run into financial difficulties due to unemployment, divorce or bankruptcy and as a result be unable to support you; The property may actually be lost in the event of the relative becoming divorced, bankrupt or predeceasing you which may result in you becoming homeless).
  • The authorities may still take the value of the property into account in any event if they consider you have gifted the property to avoid payment of fees.  There is no time limit on this discretion.
  • The person to whom you have gifted the property may be liable to Capital Gains Tax upon subsequent sale of the property.

Making a gift of your property is not a decision to be taken lightly.  Contact our team of solicitors at Penmans in Coventry, Kenilworth and Wellesbourne, to ensure you have investigated all the options and make the right decision for your circumstances.


Court of Protection

Often it is necessary to apply to the Court of Protection for permission to look after the affairs of someone who is no longer able to look after themselves.  We can help.  

Contentious Probate

As family structures become more complex and people’s needs change we are seeing an increase in matters where the terms of a Will or the rules relating to how an estate is dealt with on intestacy are being challenged.  

These can include:

  • That the will was not properly executed, 
  • The deceased did not have the mental capacity to make a will, 
  • The deceased was the victim of undue influence, 
  • The deceased had made a “mistake” as to the nature and extent of their estate
  • A claim under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependents) Act 1975 that the will or intestacy fails to make “reasonable financial provision”

Whether you are an Executor or Beneficiary facing such a challenge or whether you are someone who feels that you have not been properly provided for it is important to obtain early advice.  Simon Sharpe, Senior litigation solicitor at our Coventry office can help. Contact us today for impartial advice.




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Contact Us

Penmans Office Locations


17a Queens Road | Coventry | CV1 3DH
Tel: 024 7622 6575


30-32 Warwick Road | Kenilworth | CV8 1GW
Tel: 01926 858222


The Precinct | Wellesbourne | CV35 9NL
Tel: 01789 470022


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