The Government first announced plans for a shared ownership right to buy in October 2019. At the time the sector raised concerns about the impact the plans would have on housing associations ability to borrow. An election and a pandemic later the Government announced, during the CIH Housing Festival last week, the return of the right to shared ownership as part of its Affordable Homes Programme (AHP).
The death of a loved is an extremely difficult time for all involved and this is made worse if there is confusion surrounding the wishes of the deceased. Stubbornness and distrust often arise between those left behind, when the deceased is no longer around to provide guidance or give instructions.
In the Williams’ case, a disagreement has arisen  over the interpretation of property classed as ‘clothing’, ‘jewellery’ and ‘memorabilia’. These items are subject to a trust for the benefit of Robin Williams’ children and the Court is being asked to review the wording and to interpret whether this includes specific items that Williams’ widow believes she is entitled to.
There is a clause in Robin Williams’ Will which specifically excludes these items within the home being passed to the widow but she is still challenging the interpretation of this clause!
The first step to minimising any disagreement after your death is to write a Will. Your Will can set out your funeral wishes, as well as the legacies you want to leave to specific people or charities. One key benefit of having a Will is that you appoint your Executors; the people who you trust to carry out your directions and to make the best decisions for your Estate. This means that, if you unsure about what should happen to your property, you can have peace of mind that the best people will be making that decision for you. Without a Will, your estate will pass under the Intestacy Rules and, the person appointed as your legal representative may not be a person you would ordinarily choose.
The second step is to be clear with your instructions so that your Will accurately reflects your wishes. It is vital to ensure that your legal adviser correctly understands the ‘who’, ‘what’, ‘when’ and ‘how’ about how you wish to leave your Estate. This will ensure that your Will is drafted in a way that minimises ambiguity and reduces the pressure for those administering your Estate. Additionally, your Will can be drafted so that it is flexible and can respond to your changing circumstances – allowing you to provide guidance to your Executors through a Note of Wishes to your Will. This Note of Wishes can be changed as your circumstances evolve and can provide a further explanation as to ‘why’ you have made your decisions.
The final step is to discuss your plans with your Executors and Beneficiaries. Although this is not always possible, in many cases the acrimony surrounding the division of an estate can be alleviated by discussing your decisions in advance with friends and family.
For more information
For more information about how to record your wishes and to ensure that the administration of your estate is as stress-free as possible, please contact Donna Holmes on firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0121 214 3671.
Two final pieces of the possession jigsaw have been published on 15 September 2020. Mr Justice Knowles’ working group on possession proceedings has issued its guidance on the “overall arrangements” for possession proceedings.
One change proposed by the Building Safety Bill is the introduction of a duty holder regime, which will see statutory responsibility for the safety of higher risk buildings placed on key individuals
Throughout this pandemic, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has been publishing various “Statements on Coronavirus” (Statements) which provide guidance on consumer rights during this time.
A recent increase in COVID-19 cases in the UK means new measures are being put in place in an effort to reduce the risk of a second wave. Whilst the impact of COVID-19 continues to be felt, it is important to remain focused on the sector’s road to recovery.
Sometimes half an hour at a conference gives you the reality that has been staring you in the face all along. That was my experience watching “Change is on the Horizon”
Following our recent e-briefing on Possession Notices, Helen Tucker and Emilie Pownall from our housing litigation team discuss the impact of the changes on social landlords.
Not only has the possession stay been extended until 20 September, the notice periods to be given to tenants has been extended in certain circumstances with some important exceptions.
The Court has confirmed that a party cannot withhold its consent in order to re-write the original bargain.
Following the Grenfell Tower tragedy, building safety continues to be a key concern for social housing providers and their residents.
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