The Law Society of Scotland
offers information for the general public on Scots Law
and a History and Structure of the Courts. There is a comprehensive
description of 40 legal topics called Dial-a-Law and a directory of all Scottish
Lawyers which can be used to find all lawyers in, say, Aberdeen, as well as to find
particular individuals or firms. The list can be used to find accredited experts
(solicitors) in specific fields of law, such as IP, employment and so on.
Citizens Advice Scotland
provides extensive and detailed information on Benefits, Civil Rights, Communications,
Consumer Affairs, Education, Employment, Family Matters, Health, Housing,
Immigration, Legal System, Tax, and Travel. The viewer can also search the site
for particular topics or keywords. You can find a local office by naming the town or area.
Cairns Brown - Alexandria and Dumbarton,
near Glasgow, provides information on crime, arrest and police powers, as well as divorce and accident claims.
The Right Kind of Divorce - Scotland is a wide ranging portal
for advice on this topic aimed at ordinary people with marital problems. There are links and descriptions of organisations
which can help (both UK-wide and Scottish), information on separation, children, division of money and property, cohabitation,
divorce, and the various routes to "sorting things out" available to the individuals concerned. The site is offered by
two Glasgow solicitors - Anne Dick of Mowat Hall Dick and Alan Susskind of Harper Macleod but the site keeps any ideas of
marketing the firms well in the background; it is a mine of useful and impartial information.
My Scottish Law blog comes from Bruce de Wert, a Scottish solicitor at
Georgesons Solicitors of Wick and Thurso in Caithness. The blog is updated frequently with
postings on Scottish Divorce, Scottish Powers of Attorney, Scottish Wills and topics relating to Property Law and Estate Agency.
Bruce also offers a number of spcialised sites for the purchase of wills, powers of attorney and divorce services in Scotland,
all at very reasonable rates with a particular emphasis on family law.
Graham Walker, of Glasgow, offers information on road traffic law in Scotland,
and generally how to protect your licence
The Scottish Human Rights Commission promotes and protects
the human rights of everyone in Scotland. They work to increase awareness, recognition and respect for human rights,
and make them more relevant and easier to apply in everyday life. The Commission is independent of the UK and Scottish
Parliaments and Governments
Govan Law Centre (Glasgow) provides
Scots law 'basic advice' pages on consumer affairs, housing,
neighbour nuisance, school exclusions, and other topics;
a legal resources section including caselaw on small claims,
developments on the law of debt (from a debtor's perspective),
basic guide for organisation looking for charitable status etc.,
and information on free or low cost legal events.
Legal Services Agency is a Scottish
charity offering legal assistance to the disadvantaged as well as courses and training
in legal subject areas. Housing and social welfare law are
especially covered both in the courses and in the advice and all
initial advice is free. The Agency is funded by local
authorities and the Scottish Office.
Trust Deed Scotland are Scotland's largest Trust Deed Introducers.
A Trust Deed actually uses government legislation to enable people living in Scotland who are financially struggling with
debts generally over £10,000 to manage their debts within a realistic timeframe. The duration of the repayment period is
typically 36 months and you will pay an agreed monthly contribution based on your affordability and then when this
arrangement comes to an end, all of your remaining debts are legally written off. There is lots of information in this topic
on the site.
The Low Incomes Tax Reform Group
is an initiative of the Chartered Institute of Taxation which gives a voice to those who cannot
afford to pay for help with tax and tax credits.
There is useful information on the site particularly for Pensioners, Students and Low income workers.
Tax Assist Accountants is a national network
of accountants who work specifically with small businesses and taxpayers needing a tax return in the UK.
There are articles and news items on the site with information on these topics.
Free UK Tax Rebate Help provides lots of tax help for individuals, including
information on national insurance and tax rebate calculators in different circumstances (e.g. becoming a student or being made redundant).
There is also a separate site about the
Unique Tax Payer Reference Number (UTR).
Apparently, millions go unclaimed each year in overpaid taxes and many people are given unnecessary fines from the Inland Revenue.
Robert Newey & Co. - London,
provides information on UK taxation, including VAT, employment
and international tax issues.
Taxcafe is an advice site offering various inexpensive
guides on tax issues, aimed at individuals and small businesses. There is also a useful directory of
websites on tax topics under the "Links" section.
Winston Financial Planning is a firm offering financial
advice on investments insurance protection, pensions and mortgages regulated by the Financial Services Authority (FSA).
The site provides free initial information on different types of investment products, pensions, bonds and gilts
and the firm will provide a free initial consultation.
Tax Disputes comes from LEXLAW Solicitors, and provides information
on a whole range of topics, including MTIC Carousel Fraud, VAT Evasion, VAT Repayment Fraud, Diversion Fraud,
Duty Fraud, Smuggling, Goods seized by HMRC, Phoenix Company Fraud, Oils Fraud/Road Fuel Fraud, HMRC Interviews,
HMRC Penalties and Recovery of EU Taxes by HMRC (MARD). There is also a site from the same firm on
Winding up Petitions
Solicitors for the Elderly
is a national association of solicitors, barristers and legal executives who are concerned
with improving the availability and delivery of legal services to older people.
The site contains a list of member solicitors, arranged by town or area,
and also a very good set of links to other bodies concerned with elderly people and the law,
benefits, health, illness, disability, wills and so on.
Care Home Fees Planning is a site
set up by Tim Embleton to provide sufficient help and advice for those seeking options
for long term care (for themselves or for their loved ones) and help funding it.
The site is operated by Time Independent, an IFA. You can answer a series of questions to determine
if you are likely to get financial help from the state or local authority and also download
a free guide to planning for care home fees.
Probate UK is a site set up by TM Solicitors of Hull.
There is a lot of useful information on the site about what probate is, how to obtain probate,
the processes needed to do this and also how to contest probate. There are also sections for
people living abroad.
probatesdirect.co.uk, a site set up
by Lister Croft Partnership, of Wakefield, Pudsey & Ilkley, covers
the issues surrounding bereavement.
There is information on dealing with the registrar, meeting the funeral expenses
and arranging the funeral. Legal guidance is also available with advice on who to
call for more help and there is a set of links to a wide range of support organisations.
The site also allows you to apply for a grant of probate on-line (charged service).
Probate Solicitors (PSL) - Solihull, offer a
Resources section with information and downloadable papers on many probate-related topics.
Probate Helper is an organisation providing access to
solicitors in many locations who deal with probate matters. The site provides a set of Frequently Asked Questions
on probate matters, a jargon buster and other information about probate and wills on the site.
thewillplace.com is a national will registration service.
It allows members of the public to register the whereabouts of their wills and enables people dealing with
probate to search for missing wills. Members of the public can search on a name to see if there is a will and,
if there is, the person will be referred to a probate solicitor in their area. Professionals can register
with the site and can then, on production of a death certificate, search the database and retrieve the deceased's
IHT-Solutions is a commentary on all Inheritance Tax (IHT)
matters by solicitor and IHT specialist, Paul Solomons, of
Solomons Solicitors, of Bournemouth and Christchurch, Dorset.
It is written for the ordinary person with an interest in wills and IHT.
Certainty National Will Register allows anyone to register
their will online without charge. You can also search the register (the contents of the will are not given,
but the fact that it exists, and where it is, is provided).
Endorsed by Kevin Martin, a past Law Society President, Certainty.co.uk has been built to eradicate
the real possibility of a will being lost, destroyed or stolen. Note that
only wills prepared by qualified and regulated professionals (Law Society, ILEX, Notaries) may be registered.
You can also use the site to find a solicitor specialising in wills, in your area.
Batchelors - Bromley & Sydenham, provide a site called Dispute a Will
which gives information on ways that wills can be disputed, and the issues involved in this. There is also a glossary, a set of case histories,
and a section of current news relating to wills and problems with wills.
Executor.ie is a site from Dublin firm
Carmody Moran which provides extensive information on wills and probate in Ireland.
More Firms of solicitors (and a few companies) offering information and also, in some cases, actually preparing the wills on line:
Barcan Woodward - Bristol City Centre, North Bristol, South Bristol, provides a set
of question and answers on wills and probate.
Blake Lapthorn - Fareham, London, Portsmouth, Southampton & Brussels,
provide a FAQ section.
Berryman Shacklock - Nottingham, provide useful information regarding Wills and related areas such as Probate, Tax, Trusts, Powers of Attorney and Asset Preservation.
Brethertons - Rugby and Banbury, take details online for your will.
Clutton Cox of Bristol offer useful information about wills and probate on their site
including a cartoon video about why you should make your will.
Dickinson Dees, of Newcastle, offer a special area of their site called
Peace of Mind which provides information and documents for the individual
and includes the ability to make a will online.
Dolphin Inheritance provides information on the contesting of Wills
and the Inheritance Act 1975. Whilst it covers a lot of technical detail, it is written in layman's language as the founders have all been through inheritance claims in their own personal lives.
Elm Online is an online will writing service, where you
are helped step by step to provide your instructions for the will (i.e. not just left to work on a document
all by yourself). At the end of this process, the will is set to you in fully bound form, for you to sign.
The company can also provide a will storage process if required. A different type of service is available
if you live in Bristol, Bath, Somerset, Gloucester and the South West generally - a professional will writer
can visit you in your own home and guide you through the entire will writing process.
Fidler & Pepper - Nottinghamshire, provide a
facility for you to prepare your will online.
Foreman Laws - Hitchin, Herts,
offer wills.co.uk which provides lots of information on this topic and the ability to make one online.
Gordons Cranswick - Leeds, Bradford and Keighley, provides
Frequently Asked Questions on wills and probate.
Halborg & Co. - Leicester, London and Hinckley, provide useful
informationon on lasting powers of attorney and wills.
Online Will Limited is a joint venture between two businessmen
(Vernon & Tim) and solicitors Button Legal LLP. The site enables residents of the UK
to write a will online. There is lots of information on the site and also
a free "ask a question of a solicitor" facility ("ask Adam").
The Will Site is a company providing a
will making service and also advice from a solicitor. There is lots of useful information.
The Will Writing Service comes from Fitzgibbons & Co Ltd of Croydon.
The are members of The Society of Will Writers and have been providing will writing services in London, Kent and Surrey for thirty years.
The site provides a considerable amount of useful information and they will visit you in your home if you wish.
Thomas Flavell & Sons - Hinckley, Earl Shilton and Market Bosworth, Leicestershire,
offers information on making a will, administering an estate, and advice for the elderly.
Wollastons - Chelmsford, Essex. Take "News and updates".
www.willclaim.co.uk from Inspire Law of Banbury, Oxfordshire.
cover the three main types of will claim or will dispute: Will Validity, Insufficient Inheritance or No or Improper Estate Administration.
Grant of Probate and Letters of Administration
Kaye Tesler were the first UK firm to offer legal services online and
they have continued to do so steadily for quite a few years. Now they have developed a new online service to prepare
a Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration according to the new regulations.
Each service costs £300 (plus VAT and disbursements). The site provides a great deal of useful information on
these topics (provided for free whether or not the person is actually taking the service) on the site.
Busbys offer a facility for
Grant of Probate applications.
Clients can complete an application form available on the site by answering a series of questions online
and send it to the firm by e-mail. The Head of the Probate Department then checks the form and sends back
the official documents for the person to sign and swear. Busbys then make the necessary application on behalf
of the client and obtain the documents which the client will need, all at a fixed price of £350 plus VAT and disbursements.
There is lots of useful information about the process on the site as well.
Two sites relating to wills, probate, missing heirs and intestacy
The Bona Vacantia Division of the Treasury Solicitor's Department
deals with the assets of dissolved companies and the estates of people who die
intestate and without known kin. (Bona Vacantia means Vacant Goods). The site has a facility for relatives of
people who die intestate to search
the records and there is also an auction on the site of domain names previously owned
by dissolved companies. There are also guidelines on policy and "how it all works".
Fraser & Fraser is a firm of genealogists
which specialises in probate research to locate missing heirs and beneficiaries.
The site has a good description of what probate research involves.
They can also help find wills, obtain copies of certificates, help to administer an estate,
calculate how an estate, intestacy or trust should be distributed.
They can work either for firms of solicitors or for individuals who think there could be a bequest waiting for them.
scotwills is a company offering to
create wills online for 35. There is lots of free information as well as the
actual will creation.