Probate and estate administration
At a time of loss, it is important to avoid a protracted administrative process. Our leading probate and estate lawyers offer a seamless international service, helping families, executors and trustees to handle even the most complex estates and head off potential issues.
Price and service information
We have acted for many generations of executors, trustees and beneficiaries to distribute assets in an efficient and sensitive way.
Our size and global reach mean that our probate solicitors are able to project manage very complex estates. Where property and family members are spread across different jurisdictions, where there are disputes, tax issues or other complications, the probate team routinely consults with colleagues across the law firm based in other departments and countries to offer sophisticated and practical advice.
Services include drafting applications for grants of representation so that if necessary, you can manage assets before probate is completed, and coordinate different tax regimes to avoid 'double tax' on your inheritance. Our probate and estate lawyers can also act as executors and trustees, either individually or through WITCO, our UK trust corporation.
Executors of multi-jurisdictional estate
Advised the Executors of a complex multi-jurisdictional estate on its administration and securing Business Property Relief from inheritance tax on private family company shares.
Italian forced heirship rules
Advising a UK high net worth individual who inherited an estate with worldwide assets settled in trusts and corporate structures in relation to a claim put forward by his siblings on the basis of the Italian forced heirship rules.
Post death tax planning
Following the unexpected death of the principal of a large trading business, post death tax planning to maximize inheritance tax reliefs, both on death and on the death of the surviving spouse in due course. This has involved complicated tax, trust and corporate issues to avoid significant tax charges on the restructure and a number of clearance applications with HMRC.
Post mortem globe trotting
A typical case involved co-ordinating multi-jurisdictional succession and probate processes in a large international estate that had a global spread of beneficiaries with individual tax and asset allocation requirements. We successfully defended a challenge by HMRC to the deceased's domicile status, dealt with the presentation of a complex double tax treaty claim relating to immediate estate and Inheritance taxes, advised on the management of cross jurisdictional income and capital gains tax exposure during the administration period and on conflicts of laws issues impacting on the burden of tax liabilities, generally.
The untimely death
This involved dealing with immediate ownership, probate and compliance issues following the death of a key family member midway through a major restructuring of family business interests. We handled the interplay between the estate and the family's existing wealth management structures to ensure a timely and tax efficient succession process and the successful completion of the wider business restructuring.
Designated beneficiary of a retirement account
Represented the designated beneficiary of a retirement account and obtained summary judgment defeating the claim of an adverse party seeking a portion of the retirement account.
Litigation against former business partner in Vietnam
Represented the court-appointed administrator of an estate in litigation against the decedent’s former business partner in Vietnam. We brought a derivative action on behalf of an entity the decedent co-owned with his business partner, obtained a preliminary ruling transferring half a million dollars from the entity to the estate, and ultimately settled the case.
Private professional fiduciaries
In several different matters, successfully defended private professional fiduciaries against claims of alleged breach of fiduciary duty.
Represented a trust beneficiary who obtained a million dollar judgment and an award of attorney’s fees against a trustee who breached her fiduciary duties in the administration of a family trust.
Heir to a publishing fortune
Withers represented one of the heirs to a publishing fortune in a case arising out of a dispute with his children over the administration of various family trusts. Withers successfully resolved the dispute through alternative dispute resolution in California avoiding a costly court battle and prolonged family discord.
UK child entitled to cross-border estate
We acted for the son of a deceased German businessman who was entitled to a share of a cross-border estate worth in excess of £35m. The case raised complex conflict of law issues over the deceased's Will and arguments from some of the heirs that the son had no entitlement. We co-ordinated simultaneous proceedings in England and Germany and the case was ultimately settled out of court.
The estate of a leading British retailer
We assisted in the probate and estate administration of a member of the family behind a successful British retail business. The deceased was UK resident ‘non dom’, but with arguable common law domicile, and survived by a spouse, children and grandchildren. He held assets globally, some within a complex web of lifetime trusts, and had made wills in different jurisdictions. We managed the difficult domicile claim, co-ordinated probate applications globally and balanced the dynastic plan for the business.
The UK "non-dom" regime
"Non-doms" have returned to the political spotlight.
In our series of articles we explore what the UK "non-dom" regime is, what it may look like in the future as a result of potential political change and the alternatives regimes available across the world.
Read our short articles below to find out more.
29 January 2019 | Article
Where there’s a ‘will’, there’s a way: the importance of having a will as an expatriate living in Singapore
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Families and family officesFamilies call on us when they want a firm that understands their needs – whether they are looking to pass down wealth, set up and run a family office, or make their mark through philanthropy. Find Out More
FoundersHelping company founders to realise their vision is a hugely rewarding aspect of our work. From advising on tax or global expansion, to introducing you to investors, we’ll add value from the outset. Find Out More
High net worth individualsWith complex interests that often span several jurisdictions, highly successful people need seamless advice. With a full-service offering across our offices around the world, we provide just that. Find Out More
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