Deeds of variation

Hindsight is a wonderful thing and it is rare that anyone benefits from it; however Deeds of Variations are one of those very rare occasions.

A deed of variation can be used by beneficiaries to change entitlements under a will or intestacy for tax purposes within two years of the date of death.

It’s important to get professional legal advice before a deed of variation is used.

We have a large, diverse and experienced asset management team who specialise in all matters relating to deeds of variation. Our specialists work with each client individually to provide the highest level of advice to ensure the best provisions are made for you and your family now and in the future.

Working throughout England and Wales, our specialist solicitors offer straightforward and practical advice with sensitivity and care and regularly prepare deeds of variation for all manner of situations and clients.

Reasons for a deed of variation

There are many reasons why beneficiaries may wish to vary or redirect inheritances. The main reasons are:

  • to save inheritance tax;
  • to protect your assets;
  • to alter the interests under a will;
  • to redirect an asset held in a joint tenancy which would otherwise pass to the surviving joint tenant;
  • to provide for someone who has been omitted from a will or who has not been given adequate financial provision in a will; and
  • to resolve any uncertainty or defect in a will.

Inheritance tax planning

A deed of variation can present a major tax planning opportunity. For example, a surviving spouse may wish to redirect part of his or her inheritance to their children in order to take advantage of the IHT nil rate band for the estate.

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