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Trusts can be set up in a person’s lifetime. They can also arise on death under the terms of a Will or, if there is no Will, under the intestacy rules if any beneficiary is under 18 years of age. The rules introduced by the Finance Act 2006 are complex and have wide ranging effect on trust structures both old and new.

If you want to set up a lifetime trust to manage your assets for someone else’s benefit, you should choose an experienced solicitor to write the deed of trust on your behalf and also advise on the tax and administration implications connected to it.

Ridley & Hall can assist you with choosing the right kind of trust within your Will, setting up the correct trust in your lifetime, and your duties if you have been appointed as a trustee under an established trust.

In addition you can appoint one or more of our partners to act as trustee for any trust you wish to set up.

What is a trust?

A trust is a legally enforceable arrangement, set up either in your lifetime or on your death (normally) by a written trust deed.

On creation of a lifetime trust you hand over some of your assets (eg money or property) to be looked after by someone else, known as a trustee, for the benefit of another person or persons, known as the beneficiaries.

Once you hand over the assets you cannot benefit from them again unless you have nominated yourself to do so under the terms of the trust deed. There are tax implications connected with being a beneficiary of your own trust.

A trust arising on death does not come into effect until you die. It will either arise under the terms of your Will, but can arise under the intestacy rules (where there is no Will) and any of the beneficiaries entitled to benefit are under 18 or come within the special rules applicable to a spouse.

A written trust deed (either created in your lifetime or under your Will) allows you to specify how you want the trust to be administered. For instance you can say when beneficiaries are entitled to the assets in trust. Many people leave money in trust for children, and nominate them to receive it once they reach a certain age.

There are many different types of trust. There are also tax and other issues arising from the Finance Act 2006 which you need to carefully consider before deciding whether a trust is right for your circumstances.

Reasons to set up a trust

Common reasons for setting up a Trust are:
1. To reduce inheritance tax for your family or to reduce your own tax burden
2. To pass assets on your death without the need for a Grant of Probate
3. To take care of assets for the benefit of children, or to pay for their school fees or education

4. To shield assets for the benefit of another who is too disabled, sick or old to look after them personally, or who may be in local authority funded care

Trustees duties

You need to choose trustees to manage the trust. If land is to be put into trust you will need at least two trustees. You should choose someone who is not too old, who you trust to carry out your wishes and who agrees they have the time to dedicate to the work involved. Trustees can retire when they no longer wish to act, and a replacement be appointed for them.

You can decide in the trust deed who has the power to appoint a new trustee when this happens. The duties of a trustee are fairly wide. A brief overview of their role can be summarised as the need to:
– Meet regularly to discuss issues connected to the trust and keep written records (minutes) of those meetings
– Manage the trust assets and ensure that yearly accounts are drafted.
– Invest the trust assets in accordance with the law governing this area. The trust deed can widen the powers given at law
– Make payments in accordance with the terms of the trust. Sometimes trustees have a discretion as to whether to make payments and they should ensure this discretion is exercised when dealing with distributions.
– Open the trust at the Inland Revenue, prepare yearly tax returns and pay the right amount of tax due on time
– Deal with the sale and reinvestment of the trust assets as and when necessary

You can appoint one or more of the Partners at Ridley & Hall to act as trustee(s) for your trust if you wish. Alternatively, existing trustees can appoint Ridley & Hall as agents for them to assist with their duties as summarised above, or to obtain independent advice about those duties.

Our People

Thomas Grice

Head of Department,
Tom is a solicitor who joined Ridley & Hall in May 2021. Tom has joined Ridley & Hall from a multi discipline firm in Wakefield, having previously worked in Knaresborough and at a nationwide firm in Wakefield.  Previous to this Tom undertook his Law Degree at the University of Bradford and the Legal Practice Course at BPP Law School, achieving a Distinction....

Hannah Pedley

Associate Solicitor
Hannah is an Affiliate member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP) and is undergoing further qualification in pursuit of attaining her full membership and becoming a recognised Trust and Estate Practitioner (TEP). She has handled a variety of different matters and the feedback received from clients has always been extremely positive....
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Chloe Aston

Chloe is a highly qualified lawyer with a passion for serving Wills & Probate clients. Building strong and lasting relationships with her clients is at the heart of her practice. She prioritises understanding their unique needs and providing tailored legal solutions with a friendly and professional manner....

Deborah Kaye

Associate Solicitor
Deborah Kaye joined the firm’s Private Client Team in July 2019, to contribute to the growth of that department. She brings with her a wealth of experience, having worked in this area of the law for over 20 years. Deborah previously had strong connections in the Holme Valley where she practised for many years and has welcomed the opportunity to work again in Huddersfield, having spent a few years working for a large multi-discipline firm in Bradford most recently....

Andrew Gullett

Andrew qualified as a Solicitor in 2001 and has specialised in older client law since 2005. He is delighted to have joined our Private Client Team in Huddersfield in October 2021, having previously worked at a small firm in Wakefield...

Victoria Jones

Victoria achieved a First Class M Law (Exempting) degree at Northumbria University. Whilst at university, Victoria was a student adviser at Northumbria University’s Student Law Office, providing detailed legal advice to members of the public under solicitor supervision. Prior to commencing her final year at University, Victoria completed a short internship working with a law firm in Singapore....
Lucy Pickles

Lucy Pickles

Lucy initially joined Ridley & Hall in August 2018 as a Paralegal. Lucy has since completed her training contract and was admitted to the roll of solicitors in October 2021....
Sophie Aldridge

Sophie Aldridge

Trainee Solicitor
Sophie achieved a First-Class degree in Law, Criminology and Criminal Justice in 2020, for which she also achieved the Criminology Award for the highest overall grade on the course. Following this, Sophie achieved a distinction on the Graduate Diploma in Law, was awarded the prize for the highest overall grade on the course, together with the prize for the highest grade in Property Law. Sophie is now studying the Legal Practice Course before training to become a solicitor....
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Holly Thurlbeck

Holly works in the private client team at Barnsley where she assists with Wills, Lasting powers of Attorneys and Estate administration....

Ann Silver

Personal Assistant
Ann Silver is Personal Assistant to the firm’s Private Client Team. She joined Ridley & Hall in 1999 and over the years she has helped many hundreds of clients through the Will making process and supported many more through the distress of the death of a loved one and the Probate process...