GHP Insights

News, Q&As and Press Releases From Our Team

Q&A - If we remarry, do we need to update our Wills leaving everything to our respective children?

Q:    My fiancé and I both have grown up children who are currently sole beneficiaries of our respective Wills. We are both financially independent and wish to continue to keep our estates separate when we marry so that our children will retain their due inheritance. We each own a mortgage-free property and plan to rent out one and live in the other, so if anything happens to one of us the other can continue living where we were before. We have opened a joint bank account into which we will each put an equal amount for living costs. If we keep everything separate, is there any need to make new Wills?

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Q&A - My dad has long COVID, can I take his place as Trustee of a Will Trust?

Q:    My father was appointed a Trustee of a Will Trust set up by a wealthy aunt of his a few years ago. However, my father was struck down by coronavirus last summer and he has now been diagnosed with long COVID. He is really poorly and is prone to mithering about things, which does not help his condition. Now he is worrying about being able to fulfill his duty and responsibility to the Trust. I am wondering whether it would be possible for me to replace him as a Trustee and if so, what would I need to do?

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Q&A - Assaulted and injured by a customer! Can my son sue his employer?

Q:    My son is a relief manager at a large supermarket. Since the coronavirus pandemic started, he has suffered verbal abuse from customers and been told he must ‘just get on with it’. A couple of weeks ago he saw a man put two bottles of whiskey in a backpack and make off with them. My son shouted to the security guy who did not appear to hear. As my son was nearer, he ran after the man. As he rounded the corner in the store the man turned and hit my son and broke his jaw. My son fell against a heavy steel plant stacker that went over on him. He is in a bad way, both physically and mentally. Does he have a case for claiming against the store for his injuries?

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Q&A - If I apply for a Contact Order will my children get their wish to come and stay?

Q:    Sadly, following our enforced homeworking in the COVID19 lockdown, my wife and I decided we could no longer live together and so we separated after Christmas. As finances are restricted, I opted to lodge with my sister and her family for the time being. My sister has a boy and a girl, like we do, and is perfectly happy for my two to come and stay at weekends and bunk in with her two. My wife, however, is refusing to agree to this, despite our children wanting to come. If I apply to the court for a contact order, will the wishes of the children be taken into account?

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Q&A - Could we have a legal document drawn up for a private loan to our daughter?

Q:    My son-in-law lost his job at the start of the covid pandemic and is still out of work. Fortunately, my daughter still has her job, but they are struggling financially. They want to sell their house and downsize so that my son-in-law can start his own business, but they need to finish renovating their current house in order to sell it at its full potential value. They need a short-term loan of around £16,000 but have been unable to find a lender willing to help them. We could lend them the money, but we are concerned about the implications if something untoward should happen to change the situation. Is it possible to have a legal document drawn up for such a loan?

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Q&A - Neighbour entered without permission, causing damage to our land. What can we do?

Q:    Due to COVID19 travel restrictions we had not visited our holiday cottage for over a year until last week. Instead of the enjoyable, long awaited break we hoped for, however, it was a nightmare. Our neighbour had built himself a pond and large wooden leisure structure, clearly using our land as access without our permission. Our fence, which he must have temporarily removed, is damaged and our garden is a quagmire as the pond is leaking into our garden. His place is also a holiday home, and no-one appeared whilst we were down there. We were told by another neighbour that he is aware of the problems he has caused us but seems unconcerned. What should we do?

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Q&A - My ex keeps threatening that he will not return our children to my care.

Q:           My children have lived with me for most of the time since their father left us, but as he was on furlough from the start of the coronavirus pandemic, I agreed to them spending more time with him, to ring some changes for them because of home schooling. Now he has been made redundant and has suddenly decided he wants to keep them. He keeps threatening that he will not return them to my care. Can he just do this? What can I do to stop it from happening?

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Q&A - Can a copy Will be used for probate if the original Will has been lost?

Q:    My father has dementia and has gone into care. My sister and I have joint power of attorney. We believed he kept his original Will at home, but we cannot find it and he does not understand when we ask him about it, and the family solicitor has long since retired. We have a copy of what we believe was the last Will he made, but what happens if he dies and the original has not been found?

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Q&A - Is there a way out of my controlling marriage?

Q:    My sister says my wife has controlled my life for years. I used to defend my wife but since the COVID-19 pandemic I have realised my sister is right and things are getting worse. My wife has destroyed my confidence and says I am incapable of making decisions for myself. Back in February I supposedly collapsed in the street after leaving the pub. Someone called an ambulance and also my wife. When my wife came, she refused to let me go to hospital. It turned out I had been mugged and had a head injury. Now she says we cannot have the COVID vaccine because it will poison us. She says we will stay home until the pandemic has ended. She took my phone and credit card and changed the bank passwords. I have nowhere to go. What can I do?

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Q&A - Builder has disappeared taking our £40,000 and leaving us with a building site

Q:    In November 2019 we engaged a builder to construct an extension and do a loft conversion on our bungalow. He was to start work in Spring 2020. We paid up front for some materials but then the coronavirus pandemic started and the job was delayed. He did some of the groundworks after first lockdown and then wanted more money for steelwork that had not been budgeted for. We paid that but there was a further delay due to manufacturing problems. To date we have paid over £45,000 but the job is nowhere near complete and since January this year we have been unable to contact the builder, despite having a contract for the work. What should we do?

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