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Our Services

Farming Estates Solicitors in South West Wales

Making a Will and planning for the future is vital for any family, but it is particularly important if your family owns a farm, agricultural business or rural estate.

It is very common for disputes to arise where appropriate plans have not been put in place, causing heartache and stress for the whole family. It could also mean that your money and property is not passed on as tax efficiently as it could be.

At Hains & Lewis Solicitors, our farming and agricultural law experts can provide all the advice you need about:

  • Planning for the future – such as making a Will, Inheritance Tax planning and putting a Lasting Power of Attorney in place.
  • Probate and estate administration for farming families.
  • Farming and agricultural inheritance disputes.

To arrange an initial consultation with our approachable expert farming estates solicitors in Southwest Wales, please contact your local Hains & Lewis office in Carmarthen, Haverfordwest or Narberth.

How our farming estate solicitors can help you

We understand the unique family dynamics that are commonly involved in farming estate planning matters. Farm and agribusinesses are often passed through the generations over many years; as the current owner or someone who stands to gain a lot from the estate, it will be important to you that the matter is handled with expert care.

As specialists in this area, we can ensure that your wishes are carefully recorded and your interests safeguarded. We will make sure that:

  • The estate will be passed on exactly as you want it to be after you die.
  • Your estate plan is as tax efficient as possible.
  • There is little chance for disputes to arise over the estate once you are gone.

If disputes do arise, our agricultural estates solicitors are also able to handle these efficiently and as cost effectively as possible, minimising the risk of the issue escalating into lengthy and combative legal proceedings.

Agricultural and farming estate planning

Whether you plan to retire soon or you are thinking about what you want to happen after you pass away, our friendly, practical farming estate planning solicitors are here to help.

We will help you put in place a strong plan to make sure your estate passes on to the next generation exactly as you want it to, while also being tax efficient.

Our expertise includes:

  • Making a Will.
  • Updating your Will.
  • Inheritance Tax planning and taking advantages of various tax reliefs and exemptions, such as Agricultural Property Relief or Business Property Relief.
  • Putting in place a Lasting Power of Attorney to provide for the management of your finances, property, the agricultural business and your own personal care should you lose the ability to make your own decisions in the future (for example, in case you are diagnosed with an illness such as Alzheimer’s Disease).
  • Creating and managing trusts for agricultural and rural property.
  • Other matters involving agricultural property, such as planning, contract and agricultural tenancy issues.
  • Other agricultural business legal matters, such as incorporating agribusinesses, advice on running agricultural companies and partnerships, and employment law issues.

Probate and estate administration for farming families

When someone dies, it can be difficult to know what to do first. Farms and agricultural businesses can rarely be put on hold while all the legal probate work is done, so you may be feeling overwhelmed with work at the moment, especially if you are also grieving.

Our farming probate solicitors are here to share the burden during this difficult time. We can provide advice to executors (where there is a Will) and administrators (where there is no Will) about what to do after someone dies. We can take on as much or as little of the probate work as you need us to do to help you get the job done.

Farming estates tend to be more complicated than other types of estate because of the unique business and tax considerations involved. Things you will need to be aware of include:

  • Making sure that the farm and rural land is carefully valued, both in terms of its market value and agricultural value.
  • Tax matters, such as whether Agricultural Property Relief or Business Property Relief can be applied.

With specialist experience handling farming estates, we can provide the guidance you need in plain, simple language as well as taking on all the legal aspects of the task, such as applying for probate, liaising with beneficiaries and filing Inheritance Tax returns.

Resolving agricultural inheritance disputes

There are many reasons why a dispute might arise after the death of a relative, such as:

  • Family disagreements over what the deceased’s final wishes were or what their Will means.
  • Intestacy – where the deceased died without a Will, leaving their family confused about their final wishes.
  • Broken promises – for example, where the deceased promised an inheritance to their child only to leave them out of their Will.
  • Concerns about whether the Will is valid – for example, because it was not witnessed properly or the deceased was tricked into changing their Will just before they died.
  • Family members who depended on the deceased are left in financial difficulty after the death.
  • Concerns that the testators or administrators are mishandling the probate process.

We can assist with all these issues and more. We take an open but strategic approach to help families talk through issues wherever possible, helping them avoid the stress and expense of going to court. However, our aim is always to achieve the best possible outcome for you and we can help our clients take their cases to court.

Our expertise includes:

  • Challenging Wills.
  • Claiming inheritance after being left out of a Will (Inheritance Act claims).
  • Intestacy disputes.
  • Disputes over interests in land and property, such as proprietary estoppel claims.
  • Probate disputes.

For general information, visit our Inheritance Disputes page.

Why choose our farming estates solicitors?

Our Wills and Estate Administration team are highly skilled solicitors with many years of experience under their belts.

Our team includes Daniel Lewis, who has around 40 years of experience helping clients achieve their legal goals. Dan has practised in Pembrokeshire for over 25 years, having returned to the area in 1994 after working in the City for 15 years. He is now a firm fixture within his local community and is known for his calm and reassuring approach to what are often highly emotional and contentious issues.

Dan’s expertise is wide-ranging, from handling straightforward Wills and estate administration matters, to advising on business and company formations. He is skilled at combining his commercial and estate planning skills to provide the unique service his farming clients require of their estate planning lawyer.

We also have Lydia James, a Senior Associate Lawyer based in our Narberth and Carmarthen offices. Lydia is one of the few in Wales who is a Fellow of the Agricultural Law Association. She is a Welsh speaker and specialises in all agricultural matters through action for a wide variety of farming clients.

Our team also includes Tracy Griffiths, a skilled solicitors with around 20 years of experience. Tracy has a wide range of expertise, from handling residential property matters to lifetime planning and estate administration.

On the Disputes side, our team includes Ben Tuck who has experience handling a range of contentious probate matters and agricultural disputes relating to land, livestock and machinery.

As a firm, we are accredited in Lexcel by the Law Society, the legal practice quality mark for excellent client care and legal practice management. Lexcel demonstrates our ability to:

  • Provide our clients with a great experience as well as a great result.
  • Provide the highest quality of legal advice.
  • Be upfront about our fees and expected costs.
  • Manage your case efficiently.
  • Respond to your calls and emails promptly.

Our clients often stick with us for the long haul, trusting us to provide a solid service time and time again, no matter how complicated the issue at hand.

Speak to our farming estate solicitors in Carmarthenshire and Pembrokeshire

To arrange an initial consultation with our approachable expert farming estates solicitors in Southwest Wales, please contact your local Hains & Lewis office in Carmarthen, Haverfordwest or Narberth.