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Higher probate fees for larger estates

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Larger estates face higher probate fees, in some cases many thousands of pounds more, following the confirmation of new tiered fees.

The Ministry of Justice has confirmed the new probate fees which will be introduced in April 2019 following a consultation last March, which was then postponed ahead of the  general election in June. The fees have now however been confirmed as going ahead.

Care homes: a review of the rules

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Choosing a residential care home for an elderly parent, relative or friend can be an emotional decision and when you finally make a choice, you expect the care home to treat you fairly as a consumer.

It was interesting to read that following a year-long market study, the Competition & Markets Authority (CMA) is consulting on new advice to help care homes meet their consumer law obligations.

The study concluded that there is a risk care home residents are being treated unfairly, with some residential care homes potentially breaching consumer law.

Staying safe from investment scams

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There are plenty of ways to lose money to fraudsters. Keeping your money safe, especially online, is challenging when fraudsters use increasingly sophisticated ways to deceive investors.

Our regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), has issued a new warning over the growing threat of loan fee scams which specifically target borrowers. According to the FCA, more than £3.5 million was lost to this form of fraud during the last year.

Three questions to ask yourself to start understanding your finances

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Financial planning doesn’t have to be daunting. Framed the right way, it can be incredibly intuitive. When working with our clients we find out three important things from them:

  1. What do you have?
  2. What do you want?
  3. When do you want it?

Sound financial planning is tailored to the individual. You will know when you’ve found a good financial adviser because before they event start thinking about investment options, tax or estate planning, they will ensure they have a sound understanding of your answers to these three questions.

The key reasons 9 out of 10 people don’t retire

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Our business is over 40 years old and our many of our clients have known us for a very long time; indeed it could be said we’ve matured together over the years. In practical terms this means quite a reasonable proportion of the work we do on a daily basis is helping people in the run up to one of their most important lifetime financial decisions, namely retirement.

What is a wrap?

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These days when you set up a new policy with your financial advisor the chances are they will recommend a wrap.   Certainly the vast majority of new business transactions here at Gibson Lamb are conducted via a wrap.

Chicken and Bacon or Standard Life?

Clearly we couldn’t resist the obvious pun but needless to say a wrap is not a fancy name for a half filled sandwich from Eat or Pret (other high quality sandwich chains are available).

In this context a wrap is the industry name for having all of your investments wrapped up in one bit of software with one insurance company, or more accurately one platform provider because it is not just the historic insurers that offer wraps.