Legal information

We have partnered with our local firm of solicitors Gilbert Stephens, who offer a personal legal bureau service in the Sidmouth, Budleigh Salterton and Ottery St Mary areas.
 

Their aim is to provide legal information and services in a straightforward manner to everyone involved in the care process whether client, family member or carer. They bridge the legal confusion gap when people are thinking of receiving care in their own home and need vital information about protecting their assets or making sure that they have someone to take care of their affairs.
 
Gilbert Stephens hold weekly Will Clinics in all three of their East Devon offices, for more information click here.

Will Clinics are free and provide an opportunity for any matter of concern to be discussed with one of our friendly, helpful team. Carers and family members are also welcome to attend. Just call into your preferred office, no appointment is necessary.
 
In addition, Gilbert Stephens are offering free 20 minute appointments which can be booked on their website, either at your local Gilbert Stephens office or in your own home*. The initial appointment is completely free of charge and provides an opportunity for a preliminary discussion following which you will be advised whether or not Gilbert Stephens are able to assist you and, if they are, what legal costs are likely to be involved. For your peace of mind, there is no obligation to instruct Gilbert Stephens following your free appointment.
 
Gilbert Stephens are able to advise on a wide range of matters relating to your private affairs including the following:
 
1. Lasting Powers of Attorney

What would happen if you weren’t able to take care of your own affairs or welfare? Who would look after everything? People assume that a loved one or member of the family could take over without question. Unfortunately, this is not the case as your spouse, partner or wider family have no legal rights to act on your behalf if you are over 18, unless and until you make a Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPA).
 
There are two types of LPA:

  1. Property & Affairs - for all financial and property matters
  2. Health & Welfare – for matters relating to welfare including your care or medical treatment

Most people make the mistake of thinking that they need to be old to make an LPA. This is a popular misconception. It may be a car accident, a stroke, early onset Alzheimer’s or, any of a myriad of other misfortunes which make the absence of an LPA a personal as well as a family disaster.
 
2. Wills and Probate

A Will is one of the most important documents you will ever make. If you do not make a Will or update it when your personal or financial circumstances change, then you risk depriving your spouse or partner of their home, increasing the inheritance tax (IHT) burden and leaving parts of your estate in the wrong hands.
 
If you fail to make a Will then you will die intestate. The rules relating to intestacy are complicated and may well result in someone, such as a long term partner, not benefitting from your estate.
 
When discussing your Will, we will also consider and advise on any other relevant issues such as estate administration (probate) and Inheritance Tax matters.
 
3. Living Wills 

Although it can be a little difficult to think about the care you receive at the end of your life, it is worth considering the impact on your loved ones of not leaving a detailed plan of how you wish to be cared for. By creating a Living Will you take the burden from your loved ones and make it crystal clear how you would like to be treated across the spectrum of medical care scenarios; you may choose all possible treatments in order to prolong your life, choose to be left in peace, or anything in between.
 
4. Financial Planning

We offer direct access to fully independent financial and investment advisers who will offer effective guidance through the complexities of portfolio management, trusts, lump sum or phased investment, pensions and pension-sharing, retirement planning, equity release schemes, long term care, mortgages and other financial requirements. This financial advice is offered through Gilbert Stephens Financial Services Ltd.
 
Charges
 
Gilbert Stephens understand that most people are worried about legal costs and as such have a policy of being clear about their charges. In appropriate cases they work on a ‘fixed fee’ basis and will always give an estimate of the likely final costs where applicable.
 

*Home visits are available within a 4 mile radius of each of the Gilbert Stephens offices. For visits outside of this area, please enquire directly with your preferred office.

How to find the right care assistant for you or your relative

1. Find your local office

Bluebird Care delivers care from locally based offices, find yours to start your care journey today.

2. Get in touch with us

Fill in our call back form or give us a call to find out how we can help you.

3. Assessment

We’ll come out to you to find out what you or your loved one needs to help stay independent at home.

4. Care assistant chosen & care starts

You’ll be cared for by one of our specially trained team to support you to remain at home for as long as possible.

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