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“Trust law is complex and it is easy to make mistakes that can end up causing a financial loss to the trust or the trustees personally. Drafting trust deeds is a specialist skill, so professional advice can be essential to ensure that trusts are set up and managed properly.”

Mary Harty, Wards Solicitors’ specialist trust lawyer.

Planning for the future

Trusts play a vital role in planning for the future, helping you protect your assets and making sure your intentions are crystal clear, both while you are still alive and after your death.

At Wards Solicitors, we have many years’ experience in both setting up and administering trusts and experience of the many different trust scenarios and applications in this complicated area of the law.

What exactly is a trust?

Simply, it’s an arrangement where assets including property, land, money, shares or even antiques, are held and administered by one or more people (the trustee) for the benefit of another (the beneficiary).

For instance, you give a friend some money to pay for your care if you become ill. If you just hand over the money, you can’t be sure it will be used for the purpose you intended. In fact, your friend could spend it on anything they want.

To ensure clarity, this arrangement is best protected by drawing up a legal document called a Trust deed. This sets out that the trustee (your friend in this example) is responsible for administering the assets under trust in the best interests of the beneficiary (that’s you) named in the trust document.

Trusts can be set up during your lifetime or you can leave instructions to create a trust in your Will.

Why might you want to set up a trust?

There are many reasons why you want to set up a trust including:

  • Safeguarding your inheritance – for example, making sure any inheritance you wish to leave your family is protected if your spouse remarries after you die;
  • Tax – to reduce exposure to certain taxes;
  • Providing for vulnerable or disabled family members – to support someone who can’t manage their money, so that their needs are looked after, even when you aren’t around to help them anymore;
  • Helping children or grandchildren – you may wish to help children onto the property ladder or give money to grandchildren who are too young to look after it at the time, for example, to fund their education;
  • Controlling a gift – to give someone money but ensure you have a say in how it is used and invested;
  • Personal Injury Compensation – to keep compensation separate, after a car accident, for example, so it doesn’t affect certain state benefits.

For information on these and the many other reasons for wishing to set up a trust, please see our legal guides on this area of the law – Trust Creation and Management.

We can not only set up new trusts and advise on any tax implications but also advise trustees on their roles and responsibilities. Wards Solicitors can also act as a trustee for your trust, managing its money and property and ensuring the right amount of tax is paid at the right time.

If you require further information, please contact Mary Harty on 0117 9292811 or by e-mail at