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For many newly-engaged couples, the concept of a prenuptial agreement is probably the most unromantic thing imaginable. However, if you’re getting married then the topic of a ‘prenup’ is a conversation that’s well worth having with your future spouse.

There are plenty of pros and cons around prenuptial agreements, most of which are personal and need to be discussed between the two of you and an experienced family lawyer. But here’s what you need to know.

They’re not just for the rich

Prenups used to be solely used by the wealthy in order to protect their assets in the event of divorce. However, over the last few decades, prenuptial agreements have become just as essential for people.

After all, if you have worked hard before marriage, you’ll want to protect the assets that you spent years building up – whether you own 30k in savings or a £3m property. More...

 

What is Capital Gains Tax?

Capital Gains Tax (CGT) is a tax that’s payable on any profit made after selling assets. It is declared and paid through a Self Assessment tax return.

Assets that are subject to Capital Gains Tax if sold at a profit include:

•    Properties – including second homes, buy-to-let properties and agricultural land
•    Business assets
•    Shares
•    Personal possessions worth more than £6,000 which are not classed as “wasting assets”.

A “wasting asset” is one which has a limited lifespan, of 50 years or less.
CGT also applies to any properties that you own and sell overseas, so long as you are a resident of the UK.

What’s exempt from Capital Gains Tax?

More...

 

how to prevent a will from being contested

Contested wills are on the rise. According to the Independent, the number of challenges to Wills and trusted estates that have reached London’s High Court have increased by 300% in the last five years.

As a result of the rise of divorces and remarriages, which are creating increasingly complex family arrangements, and increasing amounts of high-value assets, it’s becoming more and more common for relatives to challenge the Will created by their recently-deceased loved one.

Needless to say, contested Wills can provoke a great source of tension between families.

So how can I prevent my will being contested?

Unfortunately, there’s no cast-iron way to ensure that your Will does not result in tension between those you leave behind.  The Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 gives Courts plenty of scope to change them if challenged legally. More...

tenants in common

The latest episode of our FAQ series sees our expert solicitors asked what rights tenants in common have when it comes to forcing the other to sell.


Q: Six years ago, my friend and I invested in a property as "tenants in common". When we bought the house, we both agreed that we would hold on the property for at least five years, and then look at selling it. 


In the intervening years, I have got married, while my friend has left the UK and is working abroad. I’m now looking for the exit strategy that we discussed, but he wants to continue owning the property.

What are our rights? Can tenants in common force a sale? Or is there a way I can make him sell his share to me so that my spouse and I can own it and live in it as our family home? More...

 

long weekend

A four-day weekend is something many of us dream about, but could it soon become a reality?

Carlos Slim, allegedly the richest man in the world, has raised eyebrows recently by suggesting employers should introduce a three-day working week, claiming that working fewer days would create a happier, more efficient workforce with a higher quality of life. The idea being that we would work 11 hours per day for 3 days, before having 4 leisure days by way of reward. The flip side of this extra time off is that we would be expected to work on until our mid-seventies to make up for the reduced average hours worked per week.

Rehashing an old idea

The idea of reducing working hours is not a new one; it’s actually the continuation of a trend that began after the industrial revolution. It was Henry Ford that created the modern five-day week back in the 1920’s. Modern technology has now made it possible for many workers to perform their role from home or on the move, meaning there’s often no need to work set hours at a static location.

Whether or not you are able to work flexibly will invariably depend on your role/ employers’ flexibility/ external commitments as well as those jobs with health and safety implications. In fact, a recent report indicated that for certain roles, productivity can actually fall as the number of hours worked increases.

Will it ever happen? More...

With effect from 15th February 2015 EU Regulations on Consumer Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) allow consumers who bought our services online to submit their complaint via an online complaint portal.

We are required under the regulations to provide our clients the following information:-
  1. Link to the ODR platform - please follow the following link for further information (http://ec.europa.eu/consumers/odr).
  2. Our contact email address in case of a complaint under the ODR regulation – Andrea Coombes andrea.c@howellslegal.com