EXPERT LEGAL ADVICE from normal people

Wills and Probate

Navigating Wills, Probate, or any matters relating to what happens when you pass can feel daunting and uncertain, and that's without considering the potential risks of getting it wrong. Perhaps this is why as many as many as 50% of UK adults do not have a Will.

At Howard & Over we pride ourselves on doing things differently. We know first-hand how important it is to get prepared and plan for the future, and as a result offer a more supportive legal service to ensure you are confident that every aspect of your personal affairs is taken care of and your best interests are safeguarded.

Our team will provide clear advice, guiding you through the intricacies of writing your Will, estate planning, Lasting Powers of Attorney, trusts and probate, giving you the peace of mind you need to know that your legacy is protected.

Your Will – It’s better to be Prepared

Life really can change in an instant, and although it can feel daunting, regardless of age or stage in life, writing a Will should be leading priority. This will ensure that in the event of your passing, your assets will be allocated and your loved ones will be looked after according to your wishes, leaving nothing to chance.

A Will is a legal document that outlines a person's wishes regarding the distribution of their assets and the care of their dependents after their death. It is a way for individuals to express how they want their property, money, and possessions to be divided among their loved ones. If you die without a Will your estate will be distributed under laws known as the intestacy rules where there is no guarantee your property and other assets will be distributed according to your wishes, creating additional stress for your relatives and loved ones.

Why you need the support of a specialist

While there are an increasing number of fast-track, do it yourself solutions readily available for preparing your Will, it really does pay to get it right. A badly written Will is unlikely to acknowledge the full picture and could leave you at risk of costly errors. Enlisting the support of qualified solicitor will not only ensure your Will is legally valid, but will give you the support of someone with extensive expertise who can advise you across a range of matters to ensure your best interests are taken care of. Many individuals overlook the significance of having a legally valid Will, yet it stands as the most vital document needed to secure your legacy 

What are the key things to consider when writing your Will?

  • Distribution of Assets

Clearly identifying the names of your beneficiaries and how you would like your assets distributed among them.

  • Appointing an Executor

Appoint an executor who will be responsible for administering your estate according to your wishes. This person will be responsible for ensuring that your
assets are distributed as per your instructions.

  • Children and Guardianship

Appoint guardians and choose who will care for your children in the event of your passing.

  • Special Bequests

Clearly state any specific gifts or legacies you wish to leave to particular individuals or organisations.

  • Residential Estates

Outlining how you want the remainder of your estate (the residual estate) to be distributed after specific gifts and debts have been addressed.

  • Revocation

Clauses that enable you to make amendments to previous Wills, revoking certain clauses.

  • Provisions for Changes of Circumstances

Consider including provisions for changes in circumstances, such as births, deaths, or marriages, to ensure your Will remains relevant over time.

  • Foreign Property

If you own property in another country, you may need a separate Will for that jurisdiction, as the laws governing Wills can differ.

There is no time like the present to prioritise your future and protect your legacy. Speak to our expert Wills team today for advice and support on how to get started.

Probate – Acting Upon Your Rights

Probate is a crucial legal process which ensures your final wishes regarding your estate and its distribution are carried out in accordance with a well-orchestrated plan, and most importantly to your wishes.

Without it, matters relating to your estate could be plunged into chaos, increasing the risk of family disputes, costs and delays. The process of probate, also known as the administration of estates, involves obtaining a ‘Grant of Probate,’ giving you the ability to manage a person’s estate after their passing. At Howard & Over our highly qualified solicitors can assist you throughout the process of valuing the estate, en-cashing or transferring assets to the named beneficiaries in the Will and handling Inheritance Tax. We understand that taking on the role of executor of a loved one’s estate can be overwhelming, and that’s why we offer flexible assistance tailored to your specific needs, whether obtaining the Grant of Probate for a fixed fee or handling the entire administration on your behalf.

What happens if there is not a Will?

Whilst we always advise that everyone has a professionally written Will, we acknowledge that a large proportion of people don’t. If you are caught off guard and left in a situation where there are no instructions regarding the distribution of an estate, the team at Howard & Over have extensive experience working on cases where there is no Will present.

Do you need the support in the management and distribution of an estate? Speak to our probate experts today.

Lasting Powers of Attorney

Assigning an LPA alongside your Will can be invaluable in safeguarding your interests and ensuring your wishes come to fruition.

LPAs are legal documents that allow one or more people chosen and trusted by you to make decisions on your behalf if you no longer have the capacity to do so; for instance, if you were to suffer a stroke or from dementia. There are two types of power of attorney that cover different issues including property and financial affairs and health and welfare. It’s a future-proofing tool that helps you to maintain control over your life and future decisions, that provides peace of mind, ensures your wishes are respected and prevents costly legal complications. 

Alternatively, if you or a member of your family loses capacity before having put an LPA in place it will default to the Court of Protection to decide who should make important health and financial decisions. In this instance that we are able to assist in the proceedings to make the process run as smoothly as possible.

If you need advice and support regarding the assignment of a lasting power of attorney orcapacity, contact us today.


Trusts serve as powerful legal tools designed to manage and distribute assets in a strategic and efficient manner.

Unlike a simple Will, a trust offers a comprehensive and flexible approach to estate planning. By establishing a trust, individuals can safeguard their wealth, provide for loved ones, and even contribute to charitable causes with precision. Trusts operate as unique entities, holding and managing assets for the benefit of designated beneficiaries. This unique financial arrangement not only allows for greater control over the distribution of assets but also often helps minimize tax liabilities.

If you would like advice on whether Trusts are the right approach for you, contact our team today.

Inheritance Tax

Laws surrounding inheritance tax are complex and subject to change, making it essential to have expert guidance in order to ensure precious family assets are protected for generations to come. Your legal team will be able to help you to identify tax liabilities, explore available exemptions and develop strategic plans to minimise the impact of inheritance tax on your assets. 

By engaging the right legal support, you will not only gain a good understanding of the legal landscape but also benefit from tailored advice that aligns with your unique needs, maximising the value of your estate for future generations.

Meet the Team

Katherine Millman

Partner & Solicitor

Ellie Colbourne

Trainee Solicitor

Catherine English

Trusts & Probate Practitioner

What our Clients have said about our service:

"I feel it would be difficult to improve upon your service."

"Service was great, professional and friendly.  Superior to other legal offices."

"Very friendly staff and very relaxing atmosphere, something I consider important during meetings of this nature."

"My late husband and I have been with Howard and Over since 1972. They saw to everything when my husband died, I received peace of mind and continue to today. Nothing can improve the service, they are very friendly caring people and it is a credit to visit the branch."

"Katherine was very efficient and business-like; she and her team worked well together. They were friendly, and explained the jargon in simple language very well. Katherine allayed my initial anxiety very quickly at our first meeting by her friendly attitude and ready explanations."

"How could you improve? No comment. It was perfect. I did my Will on make a Will week for St Luke’s Hospice. I received the utmost attention and the staff were more than helpful. Many thanks"

When asked how we could improve our service, a client answered "You can't improve upon perfection."

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