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TRUSTS

A Trust is a legal structure which is created with a specific purpose. They are commonly used in Estate Planning to enable the person establishing the Trust (known as the Settlor) to maintain control over the assets they have accumulated over their lifetime. It is important to discuss how and when these structures are to be funded as this will have an impact on the assets and potential tax consequences of the settlor and beneficiaries. An example may be to fund the cost of education for a child or grandchild. Contact us for more information.

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WHAT HAPPENS IF I DO NOT HAVE A WILL?

Why pay for a Will, if you do not need it? In some circumstances, there is no need for a Will. However, for expatriates living in UAE, this is very rare.

Where no valid Will exists or no Will can be found the deceased will be treated as having died ‘intestate’. The treatment of the deceased’s assets depends on factors such as where the assets are located.

For assets in UK, married couples with children have a right to all of their deceased spouse’s personal effects as well as the first £250,000 of the estate plus half of any amount over £250,000. The balance is distributed evenly between the children. This can cause problems. For instance, where the main asset is the matrimonial home and one of the children wants their inheritance causing the property to be sold.

Where there are assets in UAE and there is no Will the situation is complex, local law requires a Sharia scholar to be appointed. This person will oversee the distribution of the assets within UAE in accordance with Sharia principles. The distribution will depend on the relatives of the deceased and others who may make a legitimate claim on the assets such as lenders.

For further information, please contact us.

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