Will writing and Estate Administration - Encouraging news from the Legal Services Board (LSB)

Following extensive consultations the LSB has finalised its recommendations to the Lord Chancellor regarding the proposed regulation of the will writing and estate administration market and continued regulation of probate work.

In summary the LSB’s recommendations are:

  • Will writing activities – these should be subject to regulation. Unless tax advisers are actively involved in actually drafting or supplying the will it appears they should not come within the scope of regulation. General estate planning advice will be outside any regulation. There are however some grey areas, for example, what is the position where a tax adviser advises on a Deed of Variation, where we will seek further clarification. 
  • Estate Administration Activities – contrary to the original proposals these should not be regulated. This is welcome news, as there had been concern that some related activities such as the preparation of estate accounts and estate tax returns, could be brought in to the scope of regulation. This will not now be the case. 
  • Probate activities – there should be no change to the current position namely that application for probate (other than in a personal capacity) is regulated.

The recommendations are very much in line with CIOT/ATT submissions. A more detailed article will appear in April’s Tax Adviser
http://www.legalservicesboard.org.uk/Projects/reviewing_the_scope_of_regulation/will_writing_and_estate_administration.htm

Technical Team

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