Making a Will
No matter how large or small your estate, there are important reasons for preparing a will. For example, a will provides certainty for your loved ones at a time of sadness and ensures that your estate is distributed in accordance with your wishes.
It is vital that wills are drafted and executed in accordance with Jersey Law and homemade wills should be treated with caution. Therefore it is advised that you should always consult a lawyer to prepare and advise on your wills.
It is prudent in Jersey to draft separate wills of movable and immovable estate as the wills are registered in different places following your death.
For more information on wills and to find out how simple and inexpensive your peace of mind can be please contact our wills and probate team.
The law of a person’s domicile will govern how their estate devolves on their death. Simply speaking a person is domiciled where the permanent home is situated. However, in cases of doubt, legal or tax advice may be required.
Where a person dies leaving a valid will of movables they are said to have died testate and in order to collect in the assets and administer the estate, a Grant of Probate is required. The Executor named in the will of movables is the person who is entitled to apply for a Grant of Probate at the Probate Registry at the Judicial Greffe and is charged with administering your estate and distributing your assets in accordance with the terms of your will. It is possible for your lawyer to be appointed as your Executor and Le Gallais and Luce has its own executor company which you may choose to appoint.
Where a person dies having made no will of movables they are said to have died intestate and in order to collect in the assets and administer the estate, Letters of Administration are required. An administrator will need to be appointed and the law determines who can be appointed.
Do you require assistance to obtain a Jersey Grant of Probate/Letters of Administration using the “Fast Track” Application?
Where a person dies domiciled in Guernsey, England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland or the Isle of Man and a Grant of Probate/Letters of Administration has been obtained in that jurisdiction, a simplified process known as a “fast track” application can be made in Jersey to deal with assets in this jurisdiction. The documents required are straightforward and as a result, the application process in the Island is simplified and keeps costs to a minimum.
The documents required to make the fast track application are:
- The original death certificate;
- A Court Sealed and Court Certified copy of the Grant of Probate/Letters of Administration from the deceased’s country of domicile, together with all pages of the Will and any Codicils thereto. These must bear the original Court Seal and Certification to confirm that it is a true copy. Office copies, sealed copies or a copy certified by a solicitor is not acceptable to the Jersey Probate Court;
- Confirmation letter/valuation from the Jersey asset holder(s) of the date of death value of the Jersey assets.
Upon receipt of the required documents, we will prepare the Oath to be sworn by the executors/administrators. Once the Oath is returned, the application for the Jersey Grant canl be made and the Jersey Grant will be issued within 3 – 5 working days from the date of the application.
Stamp duty is payable to the Jersey Court at the time of the application. This is calculated in accordance with the value of the assets situate in Jersey. We can confirm the amount payable on confirmation of the value of the Jersey assets. An application fee of £80 is also payable to the Jersey Probate Court in every estate.
We charge a fixed fee of £650 plus GST at 5% for this service. However, if the matter is not straightforward we reserve the right to charge additional fees on a time spent basis in accordance with our standard terms and conditions.
Le Gallais & Luce has been administering probate matters for local and foreign domiciled individuals sensitively and professionally for over 90 years and is recognised as being one of the leading Probate teams in Jersey. For more information please contact our Wills and Probate Team – firstname.lastname@example.org.
Powers of Attorney and Delegateship
General Powers of Attorney
A general Power of Attorney is a short document which appoints a person to be your attorney. The Power of Attorney grants the named attorney power to act on your behalf to perform any act which you can lawfully do. In order for the attorney to act on your behalf you must maintain sufficient mental capacity to issue instructions. Should the time come when you no longer have sufficient mental capacity to give instructions then the attorney must cease to act.
Lasting Powers of Attorney
On 1 October 2018 the Capacity and Self-Determination (Jersey) Law 2016 came into effect, which has introduced Lasting Powers of Attorney (“LPAs”) for Jersey residents. An LPA is a legal document which enables a person (the “Donor”) to appoint another person (their “Attorney”) to make decisions on their behalf regarding their property and financial affairs, as well as health and welfare, to enable such decisions to continue to take effect should the Donor lose capacity in order to provide peace of mind to the Donor that their affairs will be dealt with in accordance with their wishes and instructions.
There are two types of LPA:
1 Property and Affairs
This type of LPA gives your Attorney the power to lawfully do anything that you, the Donor, can do in respect of your property and financial affairs, such as pay debts or make customary gifts subject to any restrictions that you may place on that power or as required by Law. A property and affairs LPA can be used while the Donor retains capacity and will continue in the event that the Donor no longer has capacity.
2 Health and Welfare
This type of LPA gives your Attorney authority to make decisions concerning any medical treatment that you require to include life sustaining treatment and to deal with any welfare issues. A health and welfare LPA can only be used by the Attorney in the event that the Donor no longer retains the capacity to make such decisions for themselves.
Jersey LPAs are available online from the Judicial Greffe. Once the online form has been completed, it must be printed in readiness for signing. The signing of the LPA must be witnessed by a professional witness, such as a lawyer or a doctor, before it is registered with the Judicial Greffe. Care should be taken when completing your LPA in order to ensure that adequate safeguards are put in place to protect the Donor and to ensure that any instructions are clear and legally enforceable. We would recommend that professional advice is sought in this regard.
For further guidance on LPA matters or for more information on how to make an LPA please contact or Wills and Probate Department on 01534 760760 or email our team at email@example.com who will be happy to assist you.
In the event that an individual is no longer able to look after their affairs due to a lack of capacity, the Royal Court will appoint a person to do so on their behalf. Previously such a person was known as a “Curator”; however, with effect from 1 October 2018 one or more “delegates” can be appointed to manage the financial and health affairs of an individual under the Capacity and Self Determination (Jersey) Law 2016 (“the Law”). The purpose of the Law is to safeguard the wellbeing of Islanders who may not have capacity to make decisions for themselves, and a delegate must always act in the best interests of the person for whom they have been appointed to act.
It is usual practice for the Royal Court to look to a family member or close friend to be appointed as a delegate, provided that they are able to and willing to undertake the role. However, in the event that this is not practicable, then an independent professional delegate will be appointed. In order for a delegate to be appointed the following documents will need to be filed with the Probate and Capacity Department of the Judicial Greffe:
- Practitioner’s Assessment of capacity;
- an application form to be completed by the proposed delegate;
- 2 character references for the proposed delegate;
- a criminal records check for the proposed delegate;
- letters from close family of the person who is being assigned a delegate confirming that they consent to the proposed appointment;
- an inventory of the assets of the person who requires a delegate; and
- a copy of the proposed delegate’s passport together with their proof of address.
Should the proposed delegate not reside in Jersey then further formalities will be required before the Royal Court will sanction the appointment.
Delegates are subject to regulation by the Viscount and are required to file an inventory of the assets and liabilities within 90 days of their appointment (for a property and affairs delegate) together with an annual plan and report on the anniversary of their appointment.
For further guidance on all matters concerning capacity and for more information and advice on becoming a delegate, or appointing a lawyer from this firm to be a delegate, please contact our Wills and Probate department on 01534 760760 or email our team at firstname.lastname@example.org who will be happy to assist you.