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Bloomsburry Family law


Planning Ahead For Post Death Events

The last three issues of Elderly Client Adviser have carried articles about the ways in which the provision made in a will or on intestacy can be varied after death. Such a variation might take place because of a change in circumstances since the will was written, the need to settle claims made against the estate or simply in order to save inheritance tax (IHT).

Forum: Top Up Fees

We have received numerous letters over the past two weeks asking us to comment on an article within the Money Go Round section of the Sunday Telegraph (21/6/98). The article by Paul Lewis is entitled Payment gap threatens the old recounts the tale of an elderly care home resident who has a small pension and capital that originally totalled £30,000 and is now around £16,000. The lady in question had been funding her own care home fees of just under £300 per week.

YULE v South Lanarkshire Council (OH)

In February of this year, Scotlands highest Civil Court (the Court of Session in Edinburgh) in a case the first of its kind to be heard in Scotland (to the writers knowledge)decided that the home of an 81 year old woman gifted to her granddaughter 18 months before entering care remained an asset which should be included as notional capital for assessment purposes

Advising the Elderly and the Solicitors Indemnity Fund

All solicitors will be aware of the proposed new rules for calculating contributions to the Solicitors Indemnity Fund to cover the shortfall. The proposals as recommended by The Law Societys standards and guidance committee are summarised in the Law Societys Gazette of 16 February and 5 March 1998 but the full consultation document has now been issued. I have not had time to study this in detail so this article is based on the summaries in the Gazette.

The Social Security Bill 1998

The Social Security Bill attracted considerable attention on its passage through Parliament over the issue of cuts in benefits for lone parents, but the Bill is probably more significant for the changes being made to the way in which decisions are made in social security cases. The whole system of tribunals will be overhauled and fundamental changes made to the process of decision making in social security and other cases. The role of the Adjudication Officer (AO) will disappear and there will be a new system of reviewing decisions. Most of these changes are expected in 1999.

Attendance Allowance and Residential Care

In his article on benefits for disability published in the ECA earlier this year Alan Robinson referred to the regulations dealing with entitlement to attendance allowance for people living in residential care homes or nursing homes as impenetrable, and declined to state a firm view a to who is entitled and who is not, The purpose of this paper is to analyse those regulations in more detail, and to give the writer''s opinion as to the practical implications. Readers are referred to Alan Robinsons article for a statement as to the basic rules of entitlement to attendance allowance1.

Solicitors for the Elderly

Readers of the Elderly Client Adviser will have been aware over the last twelve months of the development of the Croup known as Solicitors for the Elderly. Throughout the period from its foundation the Group has met and has discussed critical issues affecting the older client. The concern of the Group has been the issue of the quality of legal services being offered to older people and the Groups principal aim has been to overcome this.