We appreciate the challenge facing charities to maximise their income from legacies and manage their level of expenditure on legal services.
Our core legacy management team has in-depth expertise on both the contentious and non contentious aspects of legacy administration and offers a bespoke, flexible service which aligns with the charity’s in-house teams’ own experience and needs. Our team has also worked as legacy officers and we have hands-on experience of the particular challenges faced in this sector.
We ensure that reputational issues are considered at every phase and adjust the tone of correspondence accordingly; ensuring a commercial yet, where necessary, facilitating a softer approach, particularly when dealing with lay executors or where there are disputes. All members of our contentious team are experienced in dealing with alternative dispute resolution.
We are passionate about sharing our knowledge and experience with our clients and have a reputation for delivering informative training sessions and workshops. We recognise how important sharing experiences can be and enjoy facilitating this by providing regular opportunities for our charity clients and contacts to meet and network.
Our services include:
Non contentious legacy administration
We advise on all aspects of non-contentious charity legacy issues including:
- Assisting charities with the administration of estates and advising on the most tax efficient ways to deal with assets.
- Advising on the need for and obtaining Section 119 Reports.
- Advising on Deeds of Variations and rectification of Wills.
- Considering ex-gratia payments and the interpretation of Will clauses.
- Advising on the protection of the charity’s interests under Will trusts
- Advising and drafting the wording of legacy literature
Contentious legacy matters
We advise on the full spectrum of disputes which charities may face when dealing with legacies including:
- Challenges regarding the validity of Wills, including where incapacity is an issue
- Claims under the Inheritance (Family and Dependants Act) 1975.
- Proprietary estoppel and constructive resulting trust type claims.
- Dealing with the removal of executors and trustees.
- Applications for inventories and accounts.
- Tracing lifetime transactions where recovery may be required.
Meet the team
Michael Powner and Ellen Roberts write for People Management on the benefits and drawbacks of novel compensation packages
The benefits and drawbacks of novel compensation packages
The Art Net quotes Petra Warrington on how the Charities Act will impact restitution cases
A new law will give national museums significantly more power to deaccession works and make progress on restitution cases.
Lesley O'Leary writes for The Law Society Gazette on law firm strategy
‘You need to have a frank discussion about the things that matter to clients’
Pro bono client Everyday Plastic launches collaboration with Greenpeace UK
Are you aware of how much plastic is passing through your home? Do you know what happens to it?
Sarah Rowley quoted by Charity Finance on the legal issues facing charities in 2022
The charities bill will make a number of changes to the legal landscape, but charities also need to be aware of other upcoming legislation.
Philanthropy Insights – A discussion with John Pepin and Rennie Hoare of Philanthropy Impact
Join us as we discuss the current landscape of philanthropy in the UK and current trends, priorities and concerns amongst philanthropists.
Sarah Rowley appears in the Apollo and Charles Russell Speechlys’ art law series on the future of museum governance
Are the responsibilities and duties of museum boards in the UK the same as they were, say, 20 years ago?
Rethinking Museum Governance
What are the legal responsibilities of museum trustees?
Pro bono client The Matrix Trust opens The Hideaway café in Guildford
Profits from every purchase at the café are fed back into Matrix youth projects.
National Pro Bono Week 2021: Z2K’s Disability Benefit Appeals initiative
In 2019, Charles Russell Speechlys joined forces with Zacchaeus 2000 Trust a frontline legal services charity.
Pro bono partnership with Atkins and Z2K sees successful first Disability Benefit Appeals case
Charles Russell Speechlys launched our partnership with Atkins and Zacchaeus 2000 Trust to take on Disability Benefit Appeals cases.
Amelia Goodwin writes for Civil Society on a recent employment tribunal ruling which found that anxiety constitutes a disability
The tribunal found that an anxiety state constitutes a disability for the purposes of the Equality Act 2010.
Pro bono advice helps charity acquire properties for homeless people
Transform is a Surrey-based charity providing housing and support to more than 1,700 homeless and vulnerable people every year.
Charles Russell Speechlys become a Corporate Member of Philanthropy Impact
Charles Russell Speechlys are delighted to become a Corporate Member of Philanthropy Impact.
Sustainable Investing: From ESG Integration to Impact Investing
We have a wide perspective on the range of issues that fall within the spectrum from ESG to impact investing.
Pro bono partnership between Charles Russell Speechlys and Social Business Trust
Our partnership with Social Business Trust (SBT) is going from strength to strength.
Setting up a charitable foundation and sustainable investment
Heather Maizels and Sarah Rowley discuss aspects of philanthropy, including setting up a charitable foundation and sustainable investments
How have philanthropists responded to COVID-19 impact? What trends have we started to see?
Philanthropists have responded quickly since the start of the COVID-19 crisis.
COVID-19: Charity Update
COVID-19 has placed charities and not-for-profits under financial pressure, yet their role is more important than ever.
A charitable celebration
Charitable giving in Surrey