Property Lawyer impresses in Bake Off challenge

Mary Berry herself may well have been impressed by the colourful creations cooked up by the OGR Stock Denton team.

This week the team took part in the Great Legal Bake, an annual fundraising event organised to support the local Legal Support Trust.

In our offices it was Property Partner Robert Rosenberg who was named this year’s “star baker”, having wowed colleagues with his delicious New York Magnolia Pudding.

The firm has raised a total of £120.67 for the trust, with the partners having kindly agreed to double this to £241.34.


Millennials “hugely optimistic” about starting their own business

A new survey has revealed that around three-quarters of 18-24 year olds want to start up their own business in the future.

The research, conducted by Idinvest Partners, found that despite Brexit uncertainties, 76 per cent of millennials want to become their own boss, which means that two out of every 10 people will own a business by 2018.

Its survey further found that the younger someone is, the more entrepreneurial their outlook is. When older adults were asked the same question, 70 per cent of 25-34 year olds, 66 per cent of 35-49 year olds, and just 48 per cent of 50-64 year olds said they wanted to go it alone.

In terms of motivation, around half (48 per cent) said they wanted to see financial success, while a similar number (47 per cent) were in it for freedom and independence.

Those surveyed said the biggest obstacles will be losing access to the EU’s single market, and raising funds to launch their business.

Christophe Bavière, CEO at Idinvest Partners, said: “While some future entrepreneurs will be considering their options in light of Brexit, the majority continue to see themselves as future business owners and start-up founders.

“These findings clearly demonstrate the strong entrepreneurial drive at the heart of the nation and the belief that the UK continues to provide a supportive social and economic environment to foster this talent- a view that we continue to support”.

Alex Saint, co-founder and CEO of Secret Escapes, added: “The British entrepreneurial climate is as hot as ever, we’re a nation of creative thinkers who value hard work, ambition and aren’t too keen on having a boss.

“It’s disappointing that we’ve chosen to distance ourselves from Europe but I’m not surprised that budding UK entrepreneurs aren’t deterred, I don’t see any reason right now why people shouldn’t be hugely optimistic about starting their own business.”

Number of UK estates paying IHT to rise by 15 per cent this year

A new study suggests that the number of UK estates liable to pay Inheritance Tax (IHT) will rise by approximately 15 per cent by the end of 2017.

The research, recently highlighted by Moneywise, comes not too long after HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) reported that IHT receipts hit a record high of £4.72bn in the 2015/16 financial year.

The current IHT nil rate band, or threshold above which IHT is incurred, sits at £325,000 – above which the tax is charged at a rate of 40 per cent of the estate’s value.

HMRC has said that the £325,000 nil rate band will remain frozen until at least 2019.

Meanwhile, rising property prices and inflation are pushing an increasing number of estates over the threshold, meaning that more and more UK families are likely to be hit with IHT in coming years unless they seek estate planning advice from a specialist solicitor.

Changes due to take effect in April this year will enable some families to pass an additional £100,000 in property value to their children, grandchildren or other ‘eligible beneficiaries’ tax-free – but families will need to act quickly to review their Wills in order to ensure they will qualify for this additional saving, known as the new Residence Nil Rate Band (RNRB).

These statistics again illustrate the impact that IHT continues to have on families upon the death of a loved one and underline the importance of obtaining proper tax planning advice in relation to your estate and the arrangements you have in place.

Leading Finchley law firm expands through merger with West End firm

Finchley-based law firm OGR Stock Denton LLP has merged with West End firm, Blandfords Law LLP.

The merger will see Blandfords Law LLP solicitors, Clive Waller and Juliet Waller, and their clients join OGR Stock Denton LLP.

As part of the expansion, OGR Stock Denton LLP will have West End offices that will be open by appointment.

OGR Stock Denton LLP is a long-standing North London firm, with a 50 year track record of working across private client, property, family, litigation, company commercial and employment. The merger will add further expertise to our property and private client teams.

Clive Waller, who established Blandfords Law LLP with Juliet Waller in 1992, said: “We are delighted to be merging with OGR Stock Denton LLP. The move will allow our clients to benefit from all the other legal services provided by OGR Stock Denton LLP which we could not previously offer.”

Richard Denton, Managing Partner at OGR Stock Denton LLP, added: “We are pleased to welcome Clive, Juliet and their clients to OGR Stock Denton LLP as part of this merger, which will help cement our position as one of the leading law firms in the North London area.

“Following our recent move to more modern open-plan offices, this merger further signals our ambitious expansion plans, which will enable us to offer our services to an increasing number of clients.”

 

Stock exchange boss keen to keep current EU regulations for five years

The head of the London Stock Exchange has joined a chorus of senior business figures urging MPs to negotiate a transitional deal as part of Britain’s departure from the European Union.

Xavier Rolet told members of Parliament’s Treasury Select Committee that a mechanism was needed to protect the country’s thriving financial industry.

He believes that the two years set aside to negotiate the terms of the UK’s exit was too short a period.

Instead he would like to see the implementation of a lengthier transitional period, which would effectively mean that the current business arrangements and regulations would remain in place for five years starting from the point that the Government begins formal negotiations.

“What is required to maintain stability is nothing less than a grandfathering of the existing conditions of trade, for a limited period of time,” he told the committee.

Mr Rolet, sitting alongside HSBC chairman Douglas Flint and Elizabeth Corley, the vice chair of Allianz Global Investors, said there was a lot at stake for London’s major financial institutions.

“The economic system [in London] is like a Jenga tower,” said Mr Flint. “You don’t know what will happen if you pull pieces out.”

OGR Stock Denton’s experienced lawyers can advise business clients on a range of matters which cross national borders. For advice on any aspect of our Company and Commercial services, please contact the head of the department Gitta Altmann or visit.

Court of Protection trial is extended

A pilot scheme which grants greater access to the Court of Protection will now run until August.

The trial arrangements, which have allowed for a greater number of proceedings to be heard in public, had originally been introduced last year.

Officials have confirmed they have now been extended until the end of the summer, with a decision to follow on whether the system will become permanent.

The decision was previously taken to hold fewer hearings behind closed doors as part of an effort to improve understanding of how the court works.

Orders are often imposed to protect the anonymity of parties involved and journalists had been warned at the outset of the trial that irresponsible coverage would be likely to bring it to an abrupt end.

Sir James Munby, the senior Judge who ushered in the pilot, argued it would be beneficial to have a more open process “provided the right balance can be struck to safeguard the privacy of people who lack capacity to make their own decisions.”

If you need further guidance on matters relating to the Court of Protection please contact Private Client Partner Geoff Dennis or visit.

New Year, new offices for our firm

OGR Stock Denton has moved to new, larger offices, paving the way for further expansion.

Richard Denton, the firm’s Managing Partner, said: “This move signals our ambitions for the future, giving us space to expand and increase the services on offer to commercial and personal clients.

“I know our clients and staff will appreciate the new facilities, including new meeting rooms to improve their experience while at our offices.

“I hope this move will mark the start of a highly successful 2017 for OGR Stock Denton LLP.”

The firm’s new address is 2nd Floor, Winston House, 2 Dollis Park, London, N3 1HF.

You can find out more about our full range of legal services here.

Charities and universities call for greater awareness of LPAs

With the number of people diagnosed with dementia in the UK rising rapidly, charities and universities are urging people to consider the importance of setting up a lasting power of attorney (LPA).

The latest research from the Alzheimer’s Society predicts that the number of dementia cases in the UK is likely to increase by 156 per cent between now and 2021 – yet many recent studies have revealed a distinct lack of awareness of lasting powers of attorney (LPAs) across the UK.

Simply put, a lasting power of attorney is a legal document which gives relatives or carers authority to handle the property and financial affairs of a loved one who is no longer able to look after themselves, or has lost the ‘mental capacity’ to do so. The lasting power of attorney can also confer authority over an individual’s health, care and welfare – including the power, if the need arises, to determine whether life sustaining medical treatment should be continued with.

A year-long study carried out by the University of Plymouth recently found a widespread ‘lack of LPA awareness’ among Britain’s agricultural community.

The research found that farmers and agricultural businesses had a very limited knowledge of what legal options are available to them in the event that they are affected by dementia or other conditions that may leave them unable able to run their farming business.

The same study found that very few farmers keep their Wills up to date, or understand the importance of doing so.

Meanwhile, Diverse Abilities, a learning disability charity based in South West England, has found that many families “do not even think about putting a LPA in place, because they assume their loved ones would automatically have this power”.

The charity has warned: “This is not the case in English Law and if you or a family member lose capacity and have not made a LPA, a relative can’t just step in and act on their behalf.

“[This] could cause much distress, expense and frustration in the future – normally at a time that it is not needed”.

A lasting power of attorney can be drawn up by seeking specialist legal advice, so as to make sure that the LPA is correctly drawn up to include provisions most appropriate to individual circumstances and to protect the business interests. However, recent studies have found that around 85 per cent of UK adults do not have one, and are unprepared for what the future may hold.