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Lee Kirby – Accreditation from Solicitors for the Elderly

Solicitors for the Elderly Logo

Lee Kirby – Solicitors for the Elderly

WTW Solicitors are proud to announce that Lee Kirby (FCILEx) has been accredited by the Solicitors for the Elderly (SFE).

Lee Kirby

Working alongside Myron Handzij (Director/Solicitor) who is also accredited by the SFE they can both provide tailored solutions for those wishing to plan for later life. They also take a great deal of pride in the way they deal with elderly clients, their families and carers.

STEP

They are also both members of STEP providing further comfort for those who are considering choosing a legal practitioner to handle their affairs.

If you wish to contact Lee or Myron then please call 01535 662644.

Solicitors for the Elderly – Accredited Solicitors at WTW in Keighley, West Yorkshire

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Celebrate Roald Dahl Day!

Childhood classics! #RoaldDahlDay ‘A little nonsense now and then, is cherished by the wisest men.’

Roald Dahl Day

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Handzij – Lasting Powers of Attorney

Myron Handzij

Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs)

Local solicitor Myron Handzij from WTW Solicitors based in Keighley, West Yorkshire has defended lasting powers of attorney (LPA) after Denzil Lush, the former Senior Judge of the Court of Protection, warned they may leave elderly people open to abuse.

An LPA is a powerful legal document that allows a person to appoint trusted individuals to make important decisions about care and finances on their behalf, in the event of a loss of mental capacity through an accident or illness such as dementia.

In the foreword to a new book on the subject, Mr Lush raised concerns about the “lack of transparency” in how appointed attorneys manage older people’s finances. The former judge went on to criticise the Ministry of Justice as being “disingenuous” in its promotion of the legal document.

Solicitors for the Elderly

However, Myron Handzij – a member of national organisation Solicitors for the Elderly – said LPAs are effective safeguards when created responsibly:

“Senior Judge Lush’s comments have given rise to fears that LPAs are a direct avenue for financial abuse. However, his comments must be put into context, as his 20-year career at the Court of Protection will have presented him with the very worst cases of financial abuse.

“An LPA can be a positive and effective legal tool, which ensures your wishes are respected should you ever lose capacity. Senior Judge Lush’s comments should highlight the clear need for professional advice when considering powerful legal documents of this nature.”

All of our Wills, Probate & Elderly Care legal team are members of Solicitors for the Elderly and are very experienced in dealing with clients who want to plan for their future. 

Top tips on drafting a Lasting Power of Attorney

Solicitors for the Elderly logo

Solicitors for the Elderly (SFE) is an independent, national organisation of over 1,500 lawyers, such as solicitors, barristers, and chartered legal executives, who provide specialist legal advice for older and vulnerable people, their families and carers.

SFE has been campaigning to ensure essential checks and controls are conducted when making an LPA. Here are SFE’s top tips to ensure your lasting power of attorney is effective, legally robust and safe:

Plan early

While you have capacity, it’s vital that you get your affairs in order and choose the best people to manage your affairs, in case of an accident or illness. You can’t appoint an attorney once you lose capacity. 

Choose carefully

Think carefully who you want to appoint as your attorney and have an open conversation with them so they understand your wishes and what their responsibilities will include. Consider appointing more than one person as your attorney so they can share the responsibility.

Consider appointing a professional

A family member might not always be the best person to act as your attorney. Instead, you can appoint a professional such as a solicitor. They can act as a neutral third party and make unbiased decisions that are in your best interests. Bear in mind this usually involves a cost.

Think about different circumstances

Consider how you would like your attorney to manage your property and financial affairs in different situations. For example, are you happy for your property to be sold to pay for your care costs?

Address the difficult questions

Your attorney might have to make difficult decisions about your health and welfare. If you have specific wishes around your care plans, medical treatment, or end of life wishes, make sure you discuss this with them and make your choices clear in your document. 

Seek professional advice

Shop-bought and online LPA kits may be suitable for those with very straightforward financial situations or with considerable legal experience, but for most people, seeking professional legal advice is the best way of ensuring that an LPA is effective, legally robust and safe.

Keep your plans current

Make sure you keep your LPA updated if your circumstances change. Your choices around the people you want to be responsible for your finances and wellbeing may change, such as following a marriage or divorce, when children reach adulthood, or if parents pass away.

To find out more about LPAs go to: http://www.sfe.legal

 

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Orsolya Bodo (Orsi) – New WTW Team Member

Orsolya Bodo

WTW Solicitors are very happy to welcome Orsolya Bodo (Orsi) to the team. As a member of the support staff she will be helping Jean Foster on reception and supporting our Office Manager, Majid Hussain.

Orsi will also be adding to our existing translation services as she speaks fluent Hungarian.

Born in Hungary Orsi went on the complete her studies at university before moving to the UK. She has worked for last three years as part of the NHS translation team at Airedale Hospital, Steeton, Keighley.

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New Buildings – Works Continue

New Buildings – 6-12 Devonshire Street

Reception

We are very excited here as Bowman Riley Architects have provided the visuals of how our new buildings at 6-12 Devonshire Street, Keighley are going to look.

We will literally be a stone’s throw away from our current premises but the look will be completely different.

Reception Area

The reception area will be on two levels with access for those with limited mobility or wheelchair users.

The big increase in space provides us with the opportunity to have the whole of the ground floor dedicated to our clients. There are a variety of meeting rooms including a mediation suite.

There will be two receptionist on hand to greet you. Jean Foster who many of our existing clients already know and our newest recruit,

Mediation Suite & Conference Facilities

The mediation suite includes the provision of two large meeting rooms that will have state of the art ‘click & view’ facilities as well as access to additional break out rooms. These facilities will be finished to a high standard making them the ideal venue for off site meeting and conferences for firms or individuals in the Keighley, Aire Valley & beyond.

Board Room / Mediation Suite

There will also be easy access to toilets on that side of the building. This will make it easier to manage mediations without individuals having to walk back through reception. Drink making facilities will also be provided.

New toilets

Parking

There is a large car park to the front of the building which is split into two levels. Staff parking will be to the rear and all staff cars will display a parking pass.

This will mean that there should always be plenty of parking for visitors and clients, including those requiring disabled access.

The foyer can be accessed via a ramp or steps leading into the large reception area.

Devonshire Street, Keighley, West Yorkshire

As a Keighley business we are proud to be investing in our home town. Recent recruiting activity has also focused on trying to find great candidates but also great local candidates. The move to bigger premises should give us the scope to continue to grow and develop our business.

Since our merger in 2014 we have certainly seen our business improve and the Directors are keen to see the firm take advantage of developments in technology and how we deal with & take care of our clients.

Updates

We will continue to provide updates on the works as they happen and look forward to announcing when the move will take place.

Watch this space…

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WTW Solicitors proud to sponsor Keighley RUFC

Keighley RUFC

WTW Solicitors are proud to be sponsoring KRUFC this season. It is an exciting time for the club with a £750,000 investment in a new artificial pitch provided by the national Rugby Union.

Keighley RUFC are one of only a few clubs to have been lucky enough to receive this grant. This provides so many opportunities for further expansion and development of the club.

Mark Hagyard, WTW Director, stated that ‘we are very pleased to be involved and look forward to seeing some good matches over the season’.

KRUFC Pitch-Side-Board-2017

http://www.keighleynews.co.uk/sport/sportrugbyunion/15065325.Keighley_RUFC_in___750_000_artificial_grass_pitch_project/

 

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What is a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)

If you are planning for later life a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document that enables you (the ‘donor’) to designate a person or people (‘attorneys’) you trust to a make decisions on your behalf.

An LPA normally comes into use if you no longer have the mental capacity to make decisions for yourself.

What is mental capacity?

‘Mental capacity’ means the ability to make a decision. Someone with mental capacity has an understanding of why a decision needs to be made and the consequences of making it.

In some situations you may have the capacity to make some decisions but not others.

More information about mental capacity is provided on the Government website.

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/mental-capacity-act-making-decisions

With an LPA you can control decisions that may affect you in the future, even if at a later date you do not have the mental capacity to make them.

An LPA allows you to plan and choose:

  • what decisions you want to be made on your behalf
  • who will make those decisions
  • how you want them to make those decisions

 

What an Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) covers

There are 2 types of LPA:

  1. Property and financial affairs

This LPA covers your money and property. You don’t have to own your own home or have a lot of money to make this type of LPA. It can be used on your behalf, with your consent, as soon as it’s registered.

However, you can state that it will only be used if you don’t have mental capacity.

What might this cover?

  • bank accounts
  • savings
  • investments
  • the family home
  • investment/rental properties

2. Health and welfare

This LPA covers your personal and health care. This type of LPA can only be used if you don’t have the mental capacity to make decisions yourself.

What does this cover?

You can use it to let your attorneys decide about:

  • your daily routine
  • what you wear and eat,
  • moving into a care home
  • getting help from social services
  • to refuse or agree to any medical treatment you may need
  • to stay alive (if your attorneys don’t have that power, doctors would decide).

Some people make one type of LPA, while others make both. You’ll find more information about the 2 types of LPA when you’re asked to choose which type to make.

Protecting your interests

Your attorneys must always act in your best interests and follow any instructions you give them about making decisions.

These instructions can include:

  • whether attorneys make all or some decisions together or individually
  • conditions or restrictions on how attorneys make decisions
  • you can also include preferences that reflect your beliefs and values.

Your attorneys can only make decisions that you’ve allowed them to make in your LPA. For example, if your LPA is for your property and financial affairs, your attorneys can’t make decisions about your care or where you live. If your Lasting Power of Attorney is for your health and welfare, they can’t make decisions about your money.

Code of practice

Attorneys must follow the Mental Capacity Act Code of Practice. The principles are:

  • Your attorneys must assume that you can make your own decisions unless they establish that you can’t do so.
  • Your attorneys must help you to make as many of your own decisions as you can. They must take all practical steps to help you to make a decision. They can only treat you as unable to make a decision if they have taken those steps without success.
  • Your attorneys must not treat you as unable to make a decision simply because you make an unwise decision.
  • Your attorneys must act and make decisions in your best interests when you are unable to make a decision.
  • Before your attorneys make a decision or act for you, they must consider whether they can achieve the same result without restricting your rights and freedoms so much.

Safeguards

An LPA must be registered by the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) before it can be used by your attorney/s. Before an LPA is registered, OPG must be sure that:

  • the LPA is legally correct
  • the LPA has no errors
  • people have had the opportunity to object if they have concerns

The OPG can ask the Court of Protection to remove invalid instructions and preferences so that an LPA can be registered.

A donor who still has mental capacity can ask the OPG to cancel their registered LPA if they change their mind.

The OPG protects people who don’t have the mental capacity to make decisions for themselves. If someone raises concerns about how an attorney is acting under an LPA, OPG will investigate or work with other organisations to address complaints.

What if a person does not have the mental capacity to make decisions now?

This would mean that the Court of Protection would need to be involved in order to appoint an appropriate person or to make one off decisions.

For further information about Lasting Power of Attorneys or any other matter concerning wills, trusts or planning for later life contact one of our team on 01535 662644.

Wills, Probate & Elderly Care

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Residential Flood Searches – Why bother?

British weather and the increased risk of flooding

We have seen dramatic examples of how a flash flood and general flooding can impact communities over the last few years. The 2007 floods were considered to be the worse the country had seen but these were duplicated in 2013 & 2014 with the North West being hit again in December 2015 because of a succession of severe storms.

The recent flash flood in Coverack, Cornwall is just the latest example of the changing weather in the UK.

What is a Residential Flood Search?

As one in six homes in England and Wales are at some risk of flooding the search will include:

  • Surface water flood risk data
  • Groundwater flooding data
  • River and Coastal flood risk data
  • Flood Defences and Proposed Flood Defence Schemes
  • Recorded Flood Events
  • Flood risk insurability

Over half the population still fail to consider or research whether the property they are considering purchasing has flooded in the past or is at risk of doing so in the future.

The increasing risk of heavy rainfall, rising groundwater levels, river or tidal flooding caused by ‘unexpected’ weather events means that this search is becoming more and more important.

 

Our Property Team

Our property team will consider where you are looking to buy and the flood risk associated with the area. They will talk through all of the searches that need to completed and will be happy to talk through whether a Residential Flood Search is appropriate.

If you have any queries concerning the risk of flooding to a property you are looking to purchase then contact our property team on 01535 662644.

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New Licensed Conveyancer – Sarah Bright

Experienced Licensed Conveyancer joins the WTW Solicitors team

Sarah Bright – Experienced Licensed Conveyancer joins the WTW Solicitors team

Sarah Bright - Licensed Conveyancer

I am part of the Property Law team at Waddington Turner Wall Solicitors. My role is to help clients with:

  • residential/house sales,
  • residential/house purchases,
  • mortgage providers,
  • transfers of equity, and
  • remortgages.

Why clients recommend me:

  • High standard of work.
  • Approachable and down to earth.
  • I have worked in the legal profession since I was 18 years old.
  • Qualified as a Licensed Conveyancer in 2012.
  • Making the process as stress free as possible.
  • I enjoy what I do and helping my clients gives me a great deal of satisfaction.

A typical day will consist of:

  • Dealing with new and existing clients.
  • Taking instructions for property purchases & sales.
  • Sales & Purchases include Leasehold, Freehold, Registered and Unregistered land.
  • Preparing sale contracts.
  • Investigating and checking property titles.
  • Pre-contract searches.
  • Transfer Deeds.
  • Dealing with the mortgage providers.
  • Accounting & invoicing transactions.
  • Inland Revenue & Land Registry documentation.

Outside of work:

  • I’m a mother of two young children.
  • In my spare time I enjoy fell & road running and take part in numerous races during the year.
  • As a member of the Wharfedale Harriers running club I take part in races as part of a team.
  • I also enjoy walking.
  • Having always  lived in the Keighley area it feels great to be working in my home town.

Ref: SB

Sarah Bright web page

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Family Law Solicitor – We are recruiting… – WTW Solicitors

Are you a Family Law Solicitor

Are you a Family Law Solicitor?

WTW solicitors are looking for a Family Law Solicitor / Matrimonial Solicitor:

We’re looking for someone 3-4 years PQE with drive and an understanding of the need to network/market themselves. 

The post has no publicly funded element and will cover a full spectrum of family/children matters. 

Ideally we want someone who has the ability & commitment to build and develop the Family Law department. There is a great opportunity in the area for a private client focused individual. 

We look forward to hearing from you.

Apply with full CV to Mark Hagyard, WaddingtonTurner Wall, 22-24 Devonshire Street Keighley, BD21 2AU or [email protected].

 

Salary is negotiable depending on seniority with good prospects for the right applicant.

 

 

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