Welcome to my new blog. I’ve never blogged before, partly owing to ignorance as to how to go about it and partly to doubts as to whether anyone would read it. Ignorance remedied and doubts notwithstanding, I’m taking the plunge.
The focus of this blog will be topics that (eventually) affect us all – growing old, death and taxes. I undertook my training in a Chancery set in Lincoln’s Inn and found private client practice an endlessly fascinating window into human experience and frailty.
It’s also an interesting time for practitioners who work in the private client arena. Recession and austerity notwithstanding Britons have never been as wealthy as they are today. The next 20 years will see an unprecedented but long anticipated devolution of wealth by the Baby-Boomer generation.
Like the hoard beneath the dragon Smaug in Tolkien’s The Hobbit, that stockpile is attracting attention from would-be beneficiaries. Trust and estate litigation is undergoing something of a resurgence in courts up and down the land. In a recent survey, the amount of judicial time in the Chancery Division spend on contentious probate has reached an all time high of 45% with variation of trusts applications coming a distant second place making up only 12% share of judges workload.
At the same time we live in a climate of heightened scrutiny (some would say suspicion) of private wealth and attempts to preserve it by the media, politicians and HMRC.
All that combines to make private client work a fascinating field in which to work and I hope – whoever you are – that you enjoy this blog.