Can I leave assets to a child in my Will?

Clients tend to leave money under their Will for children or grandchildren. However, especially where the children are very young or the sums are large, we are often asked how this works in practice. Wills can be structured to prevent children from accessing large amounts of money at too young an age, whilst still ensuring that living expenses and education costs can be met. When should a child inherit? The answer to this will depend greatly in each personal situation. The ages and personalities of the children, asset values, and…

Interview with Laura Gill of our Residential department

Interview with Laura Gill of our Residential Property department Q: How long have you worked at Bowling & Co? A: I joined the firm approximately 18 months ago and work in the Residential team.  Q: What is the typical time frame for a property transaction to take, from start to finish? A: That's a tough question! It really depends on the type of property transaction. The average would be, say 6 to 8 weeks for a freehold property and around 8 to 12 weeks for a leasehold property. However, those average timescales…

When the end of summer spells the end of marriage

September is traditionally a time of new beginnings, with children off to school or university and parents back to work, but for many couples, the end of summer can spell the end of marriage. Lawyers often talk about ‘divorce day’ in January and report a similar surge when summer holidays are over, and research1 looking at the timing of divorce petitions bears this out, with peaks after the summer and winter holidays.  The researchers suggest that while troubled couples may view holidays as a time to stand together for children…

Interview with Ali Ebrahim of our Private Client department

Interview with Ali Ebrahim of our Private Client department Q:   Ali, how long have you been at Bowling & Co Solicitors? A:    I have been here at Bowling & Co for 9 years Q:   Is it true that a lot of adults in the UK do not have a Will? A:   That's correct, statistics show that 7 out of 10 UK adults do not have a Will. Q:   Is it difficult to make a Will? A:   No. We make it easy at Bowling & Co by sending a Wills…

Landlords must check they hit the spot with deposits

Claims for incorrectly handled property rental deposits are soaring and landlords should be alert to the danger and ensure they or their agents are complying with the legal requirements, if they want to avoid high penalties. According to figures from insurers, the number of claims relating to deposits peaked at 25% of all professional indemnity claims made by estate and letting agents in the first quarter of this year, up from just 3% last year 1.  The claims most often relate to a landlord lodging a deposit late or failing…

Bump in the night for Airbnb landlords

Rule changes on short term lets could see part-time landlords hit by a new tax bill from next year if they let out their whole property. Homeowners can earn up to £7,500 per year tax free by renting a room to a lodger, but the rise of the sharing economy and sites like Airbnb has seen many hobby landlords come into the market and use the tax break to offset income when they let the whole of their home out for short stays. Whether it’s property owners in SW London…

Buying a house for holiday letting

If you've got the money to buy a holiday home, why have it sitting empty for much of the year? Unless you're going to be popping down to your holiday home every weekend, you could earn a sizeable income letting it out for holidaymakers to enjoy. If you want any more financial incentive then consider that a small, 2-bedroom cottage in a desirable part of the country (such as the Lake District or the West Country), can bring in an income of around £12-£15,000 a year. A larger property could…

Civil partnership or cohabit – which is better?

Not everyone wants to get married in a church or registry office. For many cohabiting couples, a civil partnership is far more attractive – it moves away from the idea of women being the ‘property’ of their husbands and is infinitely more acceptable to those who do not follow any particular faith. Civil partnerships have been available for same-sex couples since 2004, yet they are still not available for heterosexual couples who cohabit. In June the legality of denying heterosexual couples the right to have a civil partnership was challenged…

How are businesses coping?

Now that GDPR has been in force for a number of months, we thought it was time to take a look at how it's affecting businesses. Are companies struggling to keep up? What impact have the regulations had on digital services? Are we likely to see organisations punished with large fines in the future? Here, we take a look at how businesses are coping with GDPR and what challenges they face. Struggling to cope with data requests With the introduction of GDPR, businesses have found themselves struggling to keep up…

What to do if your business is being held to ransom

Cybercrime, both against businesses and individuals, is becoming more common. It’s frightening and a major issue for businesses, which can end up having a big impact on your finances. There are also some pretty heavy potential legal issues to think about too, especially if your customers’ data has been compromised. Contrary to popular belief, it’s mainly small businesses that face the brunt of attacks. While large corporations face being bombarded by hacks on a daily basis, they often have entire departments dedicated to fighting off cyber attacks and blackmail attempts.…