My role

As private client partner and head of the personal planning team, my focus is on leading a team to provide excellent advice tailored to the needs of individuals to plan and build their future. Helping people through tough times and supporting a proactive approach, I combine legal knowledge with down to earth, practical advice delivered in an understandable way.  

The clients I work with appreciate my honest and friendly approach, as shown in their feedback, which includes:

"Donna Holmes was well-prepared and professional.  Willing to pause and expand on any queries.  Very honest and friendly approach."

"I have learnt lots of things I didn't know that will help me with my situation."

My experience

As a STEP member, I advise individuals about planning their future - advising on wills, tax planning, probate, and trusts, (particularly personal injury trusts.)

As an Office of the Public Guardian Panel Deputy, I have wide experience with of mental capacity property and affairs matters - appointment of a deputy, assisting lay deputies, deputyship administration and Lasting Powers of Attorney.

My specialisms

  • Wills, tax and estate planning
  • Court of Protection
  • Personal injury trusts
  • Probate
Testamentary freedom and loss of capacity
Testamentary freedom and loss of capacity

Known as Testamentary Freedom, a person making their will (a testator) can decide to make provision and leave gifts to family, friends and/or charity on their death – and also to exclude people from benefiting.

Keeping it simple – tax-effective gifting
Keeping it simple – tax-effective gifting

In regards to mitigating inheritance tax in particular, the Inheritance Tax Act 1984 contains some really clear (and straightforward) tax planning opportunities and tax exemptions.

The past six months
The past six months

We are delighted that our team was recognised as a national and an international leader for the work we undertake in supporting and advising vulnerable individuals and their families, with the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners’ prestigious "Vulnerable Client Team of the Year" award.

Capital Gains?
Capital Gains?

This is good news for tax payers, particularly higher-rate taxpayers who can look to concentrate on capital growth rather than income generation through their savings and investments, to generate tax efficient investment performance where appropriate.

Giving to Charity - is it for me?
Giving to Charity - is it for me?

Related BBC article - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-34186128. The charity sector relies on public goodwill and funding to deliver its objectives – and many people support the aims and objectives of charitable organisations – but perhaps not their publicised ‘slipshod’ tactics for fundraising.

A Conservative Government – Where next for Inheritance Tax?

Well, the honest answer at this stage is ‘we don’t know!'. Not altogether helpful I appreciate but, unfortunately, it is a true reflection of where we are! The Conservative Manifesto promises to increase the Nil Rate Band (NRB) for Inheritance Tax purposes.

The importance of clarity in your Will

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.

Sign up to Newsroom

To receive invitations to our events, as well as information and articles on legal issues and sector developments that are of interest to you, please sign up to Newsroom.