Watson House,
Broadway West,
Leigh on Sea,
Essex, SS9 2DA

Tel: 01702 715411
Fax: 01702 476524
The Departments

AS FROM JANUARY 2020 Civil Partnerships will be available for heterosexual couples as well as single sex relationships, for those who do not wish to enter into a religious or civil marriage.

GOOD NEWS for property buyers, the Government has waived Stamp Duty Land Tax on all purchases of properties up to 500,000 until 31st March 2021. This, at a time when property prices appear to be on the increase.

GOOD NEWS for Probate Departments and the Bereaved;

News a hike in probate fees is to be ditched by the government was today welcomed by the Law Society of England and Wales.

Law Society president Robert Bourns said: "This proposal would have affected 42% of estates and would have put pressure on families when they have just suffered a bereavement, so we are glad it is no longer going forward."

The proposal, which surfaced in the recent spring budget, would have hiked probate fees from a current flat fee of 215 (or 155 if done by a solicitor) to a sliding scale between 300 and 20,000 based on the value of the estate.
The Law Society was among the 97% of respondents to the consultation who argued against the proposed increases, suggesting instead that a much more moderate and stepped increase was appropriate.

We are pleased to announce the recent recruitment of the new member of the team, namely Pauline Bartlett a family law executive of significant experience. Also, we are pleased to say that Mr James Baker is to continue at this Firm following completion of his training contract as a Solicitor. His training period ends on 21st October 2020 and subject to some incidental courses he will be admitted as a Solicitor, it is anticipated, in December 2020. James has significant local experience in car sales and as a local Estate Agent of good repute.

Following the recent, and very well earned, retirement of local Solicitor Mr Graham Hilbery of Messrs Forbes McClean and formerly of Messrs Francis, Thatcher & Co, we are pleased to assist Graham's client's by storing his Wills and Property Deeds. We have advertised our involvement and we are currently engaged in writing to all of Graham's client's to try to ensure that everyone knows where their important legal documents are held and to offer any help and assistance if requested or appropriate. We are pleased to assist where possible. Please contact Colin Lander, his secretary Maureen for further information. We wish Graham a very long and happy retirement.