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Broken promises

What should a private client solicitor consider when advising elderly clients in the context of proprietary estoppel, asks Matthew Evans

29 May 2014

Advising elderly clients requires a vast number of legal, practical and emotional considerations to be borne in mind from the outset. Numerous examples include checking whether a client has capacity, whether a lasting power of attorney is appropriate, whether a lifetime gifts have been made for tax purposes and how they intend to dispose of their assets, including property and land.

The last point may seem straightforward, but how many practitioners go further and ask whether their client has made any lifetime promises or assurances about devolution on death?

This question is designed to tease out any information that could potentially give rise to
the equitable doctrine of proprietary estoppel. Ensuring that clients are alive to all potential challenges is so important in today’s climate. There was a 700 per cent increase in the n...

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