Wills and estate planning - the right time is right now
Our highly experienced team of lawyers are specialists in providing a comprehensive private wealth service for individuals and their families, assisting with many aspects of their lives in an efficient and discreet way.
Clients include entrepreneurs and business owners, family businesses and investors, many with international assets and family spread around the world..
We take the time to get to know our clients as we build long-standing relationships with them. Our aim is to help manage and protect their wealth for themselves and future generations, finding personalised solutions that are right for them.
Our private wealth team bring together lawyers from our private client, family, immigration, real estate, and corporate and commercial teams. These lawyers work closely with our other practice areas when required, including dispute resolution, employment and criminal litigation. This ensures that our clients receive a seamless, multi-disciplinary service, with the specialist advice at the right time.
Under this broad heading the Private Client team at Kingsley Napley cover anything from simple Wills directing assets on death all the way through to complex gifting and mitigating inheritance tax through trusts and corporate structures. We concentrate on the wishes of the client and provide bespoke advice which could take the shape of lifetime gifting through family investment companies, limited liability partnerships or trusts. It also covers Wills, which are often flexible in their nature but provide control for the appointed executors/trustees. We work with a wide range of clients but have specific expertise on more complex cases, especially involving cross border assets and privately owned companies. We like to be there for every step with the client over generations and will often work side by side with other advisors such as accountants and financial advisors. If we could sum up what we look to achieve for every client in a single phrase, it would be – “we are in the business of asset protection for families across generations”.
Trusts are not as effective as they once were for holding assets. The same can be said for offshore companies holding residential property. However, they still have their place in succession planning as their main aim is asset protection and tax mitigation. Our private client team has many decades of trust experience including the creation of trusts and advice to trustees and beneficiaries surrounding the running of a trust. This does not just cover onshore trusts but also offshore trusts. We work with advisors in other jurisdictions to provide joined up advice for clients with a UK footprint.
Our immigration team assists a significant number of clients moving to the UK on a yearly basis. The complexities of UK tax can often be just as hard as arranging for a permanent stay in the UK and steps need to be taken before an individual or family becomes UK resident. We have tax specialists in the our private client team that regularly advise international clients on UK tax matters when they are considering a move to the UK, considering investing in the UK or have already moved to the UK. We also advise clients who are looking to leave the UK about how best to manage the exit process. We often work closely with accountants and cover areas such as residence, domicile and clean capital planning. We also review their asset base in the UK and recommend UK Wills and UK Lasting Powers of Attorney if appropriate.
While we are able to carry out probate work for a wide range of estates, we have a strong reputation in the market place for tackling the more complex work surrounding international assets, significant inheritance tax bills and dealing with important tax exempt assets such as private businesses or agricultural land. We advise executors and also beneficiaries on the administration of the estate and look to provide bespoke pragmatic advice to move through the administration as quickly as possible. We are adept at dealing with local lawyers in different jurisdictions if required, and advising on the impact of the EU succession regulation, European matrimonial laws and the effect of UK tax on overseas assets. Probates will usually have two or three fee earners attached to it in order to provide continuity and a blended hourly charge out rate.
The older generation are the first generation who have really travelled the world and begun owning assets in different jurisdictions on a regular basis. As indicated above this requires careful succession planning and focused cross border probate on death. However one area that is often overlooked when advising clients, and needs particular careful consideration, is loss of capacity for these global clients. Kingsley Napley Private Client team will regularly advice domestic clients on loss of capacity and have a well-regarded Court of Protection team. However a key focus is cross border loss of capacity where clients lose capacity in the UK or in another country and have assets in other countries. In order for their family to get access to these assets, the appropriate legal authority will need to be sought in the relevant jurisdiction. This may be through the court or through a Power of Attorney already drafted. There will be considerations regarding habitual residence and the advice of professional advisors in the relevant jurisdictions is vital.
Our Real Estate team act for many families on both commercial and residential property transactions. Commercial projects include hotels, restaurants, office and apartment blocks, retail parks, manufacturing, scientific and aviation facilities. Residential matters range from substantial London houses, luxury penthouses, country houses and landed estates to modern apartments for the younger generation.
Our team are known in the market for their diligence and commitment to our clients. Our clients and their lenders have remarked that our title investigations are some of the most thorough and detailed in the market. For this reason we are often chosen to act in transactions with new-build and heritage properties.
Clients appreciate our ‘can do’ attitude to transactions to ensure the matters proceed as quickly and smoothly as possible. We are always on hand to provide advice when our clients need it. We work tirelessly to help secure our clients’ property and overcome challenges that may arise during the process.
The team will aim to protect our clients’ interests and structure the transaction in the most efficient way, working in conjunction with other practice areas within the firm: private client (tax), family, commercial, immigration and dispute resolution. We offer a truly personal service and bespoke legal solutions based on our multi-disciplinary expertise.
Recognised nationally and internationally as one of the best family law teams in the UK, our team of family and divorce lawyers regularly advise clients (or their partners) who are entrepreneurs, high net worth individuals, City professionals and those in the public eye. We understand how international wealth, trusts and inherited wealth impact upon divorce settlement and have strong relationships with matrimonial lawyers and other professional advisors across the world. We have many years’ trusted experience of supporting our clients through complex financial disputes, putting our clients’ interests first and working hard to secure the best outcome. Our legal advice will be given hand in hand with the tax expertise of our Private Client team and, where relevant, we will call upon the services of trusted accountants, financial and pensions advisers.
If you are planning to marry (or enter a civil partnership), you may wish to take steps to protect your assets in the event your relationship breaks down by entering into a prenuptial or pre civil partnership agreement. Increasingly, individuals are looking to prepare agreements to give them more certainty about their financial rights and obligations if the marriage breaks down in the future. If you are already married, you may want to consider entering into a post nuptial agreement to regulate the financial terms of any separation. Since the 2010 case of Radmacher and Granatino, courts should give effect to a nuptial agreement that is freely entered into by each party with a full appreciation of its implications unless, in the circumstances prevailing, it would not be fair to hold the parties to their agreement. If you have assets or income to protect, a nuptial agreement can form part of your estate planning in the future. Such agreements can also deal with financial, tax and succession planning, and can be tailored to your specific objectives. We are highly experienced in drafting, negotiating and advising on pre and post nuptial agreements. We give clear and efficient advice on the law, but we are sensitive to the emotional difficulties associated with the process.
Our top ranked immigration team specialises in assisting high net worth individuals and their families looking to relocate to or remain in the UK. We have been working on the Tier 1 Investor scheme since its inception and have an established network of specialist advisors to help support clients through this visa category. We will work with you to ensure that your UK immigration journey is seamless from your first visa through to permanent residence and British Citizenship if that is your ultimate aim. For those looking to establish a business in the UK we can help you find the best visa category for you and we also regularly assist senior executives transferring to a UK office.
We act in disputes for high net worth individuals, families, family offices and trustees in seeking to protect personal wealth. We have specialist expertise in relation to both onshore and offshore trust litigation and domestic and multi-jurisdictional probate disputes. Such disputes might include a challenge to the validity of a Will, breach of trust matters, a claim under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975, dealing with court applications by trustees or a Will construction or proprietary estoppel claim. We are ranked in both Chambers and Partners and The Legal 500 as experts in this field.
Our reputation management and media team has a long and established history of acting in high profile matters where the media spotlight has been shone at our clients. We advise our private clients on all aspects of reputation management and media law including assisting high profile individuals and public figures through a time of crisis, seeking to protect clients who are threatened with deeply private information being put in the public domain whether by news organisation, the internet or social media and dealing with harassment whether domestic or by the press. The team are available at all times and on an emergency basis.
Our employment team advises and represents senior executives and board directors, partners, entrepreneurs, and high profile public figures throughout their employment journey, from negotiating the terms of a new contract through to exiting a role, and everything in between.
We maximise our clients' financial position by explaining and enforcing their legal rights and duties. We communicate clearly and listen carefully to our clients to ensure that we protect their interests and reach their goals. Drawing on many years of experience, and our commercial and strategic expertise, we help clients to resolve sensitive disputes creatively, and deliver results in line with their objectives.
Our criminal litigation team has acted for senior, political and high net worth individuals in some of the most well-known global financial and corruption cases of recent years. We therefore understand the enhanced pressures involved in conducting work for such clients: not least the increased interest and scrutiny from the press, media and public but also the need to take into account and work around individuals’ demanding personal schedules. Our criminal lawyers are well known for this work and have successfully defended individuals and organisations in investigations led by the SFO, FCA and National Crime Agency, concerning allegations of serious fraud, money laundering, bribery and corruption.
In respect of cross-jurisdictional matters, we have significant experience in acting for clients affected by extradition requests, INTERPOL red notices, sanctions and alleged breaches of global corporate obligations and responsibilities under internationally recognised human rights norms. We are also experienced in advising on the deployment of Unexplained Wealth Orders (UWOs) and are frequently called on to advise on new asset freezing and forfeiture powers introduced under the Criminal Finances Act to target illicit finance and unexplained wealth. Our lawyers are highly sophisticated, astute, supportive and are particularly well known for their skill in providing strategic advice and ability to keep high profile cases out of the public eye.
If you would like more information about how we could assist you, please contact any member of our team.
Partner and Head of Department
Partner and Head of Department
The lawyers are caring, professional and sensitive to their clients' needs. They deal with matters quickly and efficiently."
Legal 500 UK 2020
Kingsley Napley advises on wealth and succession planning, and trust and probate disputes. They have strength in depth and they're extremely professional and very experienced."
Chambers High Net Worth Guide 2019
Kingsley Napley has a very strong family department. As a firm, they're absolutely top end."
Chambers High Net Worth Guide 2019
Kingsley Napley have a well-established real estate team that advise on high-value transactions. They have a collaborative approach."
Chambers High Net Worth Guide 2019
Kingsley Napley ... are well suited to act for high net worth clients who find themselves in troubling legal issues."
Chambers High Net Worth Guide 2019
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