Trusts are used to help you plan for the future - for example, passing your wealth on to children or grandchildren, paying for school fees or a care home, or as part of your tax planning.

Katharine Parsons, Bishop's Stortford
Katharine Roach, trainee trust and tax accountant in Bishops Stortford

Trust solicitors: Expert legal advice

What are will trusts?

A will trust is something you set up to benefit the people you want to pass on money or possessions to. After your death it will come into effect and the trustees who you have named, are given control over the assets covered by the trust. They must manage the trust on behalf of the beneficiaries of the trust. You can be specific about how much each person gets and when, or you can allow the trustees to decide; it is common to leave a letter of wishes to indicate your thoughts.

What can a will trust be used for?

They can be used in a range of ways, however common uses for trusts include:

  • paying for your children or grandchildren’s future education
  • providing resources specifically to care for loved ones who are vulnerable in some way
  • leaving money or a house to support your spouse from a second marriage while they are still alive, but ensuring that those assets will then go to children from the first marriage after the second spouse has died.

Setting up a trust

Our trusts specialists, including lawyers and tax accountants, can help you use and manage trusts effectively and stay the right side of the regulations. At the outset, we'll help you decide what type of trust is right for you. We have particular expertise in the creation of:

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Our trust service

We know that trusts can be difficult and daunting. So our job is to make the process as simple for you as possible. Our services cover:

  • setting up a trust to do exactly what you need it to do
  • taking care of the trustees, setting up their appointment and making sure they get clear, tailored advice on how to fulfil their duties under the trust, for example, staying on top of a shifting legal and taxation landscape.
  • acting as professional trustees
  • managing the tax liability efficiently

  • tax submissions are completed on time and accurately
  • tax efficient ways of making trust distributions 
  • day-to-day administration
  • managing trustees
  • winding-up a trust. 

Tees also offers independent financial advice and our wealth management colleagues can offer you a seamless service with investment advice, to ensure all your trust affairs are managed efficiently.

We’re here to help

Call us for a confidential, no obligation chat, or fill out our enquiry form and we will let you know how we can help. We can also visit you at your home if you wish.

Our specialist teams are based in:

  • Cambridgeshire: Cambridge
  • Essex: Brentwood, Chelmsford, and Saffron Walden
  • Hertfordshire: Bishop's Stortford and Royston 

But we can help you wherever you are in England and Wales.

Call our specialist solicitors on 0808 231 1320

Trusts FAQs

What is a legal trust?

A trust is a legal device used as a way of planning for the future and providing protection. You can use a trust to pass your wealth on to your children or grandchildren, to pay for school fees or a care home, or as part of your tax planning. 

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What are the different kinds of Trusts?

There are several different kinds of trusts that serve different purposes for the settlor (the party/s who put assets into the trust).  Trust types include bare trusts, interest in possession trusts, mixed trusts, discretionary trusts, accumulation trusts, settlor-interested trusts and non-resident trusts. The most common types of trusts to be set up during a lifetime are the following.

  • Discretionary Trusts – This kind of trust gives the trustees the power to act at their discretion in regard to decisions about how to use, distribute and manage the assets in a trust. This is usually to protect against potential issues with beneficiaries who are not responsible enough to manage the money, or no longer have a legitimate interest in the assets; this could be to do with marital disputes etc.
  • Bare Trusts – These trusts are a simple way to ensure capital is protected for a younger person until they are at an appropriate age to receive it. The trustee will hold the assets of the trust until the beneficiary has turned 18 years old when they will receive the amount.
  • Trusts for minors – Bare trusts, and discretionary trusts (among others) can be set up so that instead of the beneficiary standing to benefit as soon as they are of legal adulthood, the settlor caps the beneficiary’s age so that they may not receive the assets intended of them before they reach a certain age, for example, 25 years old. 
  • Personal injury trusts – These trusts exist to hold and manage the funds received as compensation due to an injury/medical condition.

Who can have a trust?

Anyone over the age of 18 can set up a trust to hold their assets. There is not a set amount needed to set up a trust. However, you may consider a trust when you have assets you wish to protect, control or pass on. 

How would a trust benefit me?

Trusts have a number of useful functions for managing your assets. For example, trusts can be used to:

  • pass on assets when you die,
  • pass on assets during your life,
  • assist in managing the affairs of another who is no longer able,
  • manage assets for someone who is too young to do it for themselves,
  • or just to control and protect family assets.

Trusts can offer protection for your assets, ensuring your financial interests.

Who looks after a trust?

A trust is managed by trustees. The trustees are appointed by you and in some cases can be changed, added, and removed, as per your instruction. 

How do I decide who are my trustees?

A trustee(s) needs to be a party, over the age of 18, that you trust to protect your fiscal concerns and manage your assets the way you have stipulated. If the trustees you appoint are also beneficiaries, you might consider whether it could result in a conflict of interest. Ultimately it is about who you trust to respect your wishes, be that your spouse or partner, family, friends, financial professional, or legal professional.

How long do trusts last?

Trusts made during your life can last up to 125 years. It can be set up in the trust for the remaining assets to be dealt with as you wish once this time has passed. 

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