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Private clients

For many years our private client lawyers have supported families, wealthy individuals, landowners, entrepreneurs, investors, trustees (from individuals through to offshore trustees), accountants, independent financial advisors and other professionals, both on and offshore on a range of relevant legal areas common to private wealth.

While we continually attract new private clients, many have been with us for several generations, and we pride ourselves on providing a partner-led, collaborative approach supporting clients (nationally and internationally) and building lifelong relationships.

From financial land tax planning to the future succession of your business or estate, our private client team work closely with you and other professionals to provide tailor-made solutions.

The private client team is ranked first for private client work for the Midlands by both Chambers UK and the Legal 500 and we are all members of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP).

Our goal is to guide you through the labyrinth of private client laws, rules and legislation and alleviate your concerns. We do this through effective and timely planning to help you and your family preserve your estate.

Our private client services and advice include:

  • Wills - including those with complex trust provisions, to help protect assets for the next generation.
  • Succession of family estates and businesses through generations, and related estate planning.
  • Setting up and restructuring trusts and all aspects of trust administration
  • Professional trustee services – either through an individual or our trust company Mowbray Trustees Limited.
  • Specialist advice on commercial trusts family investment companies, agricultural and other family partnerships.
  • Tax - primarily inheritance tax including agricultural and business property relief, capital gains and income tax, succession and estate planning. Tax and legal advice for non-UK domiciled individuals.
  • Trust and estate disputes.
  • Probate and administering the estates of deceased individuals with complex business, agricultural and tax implications. Including estates involving overseas assets.
  • Powers of attorney and appointment of deputies. Dealing with the court of protection where a person has lost capacity.

Our clients

Our clients include trustees (from individuals through to corporate trustees), entrepreneurs, landowners, investors, accountants, independent financial advisors and other professionals, both onshore and offshore.

We also provide wider legal services for private clients under the supervision of the client partner, including property, litigation, commercial and corporate work, and corporate and property tax.

Featured experience

Family trusts 

We regularly restructure trusts by creating sub funds or merging or separating trusts for the benefit of family members. We have also conducted various applications to court to extend the duration of trusts or the time for which income can be accumulated. We also advise offshore trustees. Examples include:

  • Advising the owner of a very successful international business who wishes the business to continue profitably yafter his death for his children but also wishes to enable the business to be run free from family interference. This involved the creation of flexible e discretionary trust wills, agreeing to act as independent trustees and establishing a group advisory board to manage the business and guide the trustees and family.
  • Creating trusts and a family investment company for married clients who have just sold their property business.
  • Advising a client whose children are already running the family business but have different tviews as to the future of the business. This included creating separate flexible etrusts in her will and restructuring the trusts that already own some of the shares to create sub funds enabling the next generation to have a greater level of independence and manage separate parts of the business going forwards.

Acting as trustee 

We act as trustee of a number of client trusts, the high value ones between £100m and £700m. We provide advice to the trustees and deal with the trust, including acting as trustee of and advising about the tax status of a large provident fund.

Complex estates 

We frequently administer large estates with complex business, agricultural and tax implications often involving assets overseas. We also advise on post-death tax planning and rearrangements and the restructuring of will trusts to fit with the family’s requirements. For example, we administered the estate of a deceased landowning client (£20m+) involving complex tax implications, gifts, tax exemptions, offshore eassets, tax planning and litigation.

Family business planning 

We advised the owners of a large international family business about effective succession planning by creating trusts to own shares, a family constitution and involving the next generation in the business. We also prepared wills including trusts and specialist lasting powers of attorney to assist should the shareholders lose mental capacity.

Testimonials

What we do

We regularly advise estates clients, individuals, trusts and charities on their corporate and commercial arrangements - including in relation to family office family investment companies, trusteeships over business interests and succession.

For example, on the corporate side in addition to the support we provide in relation to transactions and funding, we advise high net worth individuals on a range of issues relating to their business interests from structuring or realising their investments through to succession issues in relation to owner managed businesses.

We also advise on the setting up and ongoing governance of family investment companies and angel investors on their investments in trading companies and in relation to the use of partnerships and LLPs. We also have a corporate trustee which acts as a trustee in many of our clients’ trust arrangements.

On the commercial side we advise on contracts and arrangements relating to any commercial activities carried out by our clients or activities relating to their properties, business, or assets.

Our property and agricultural team provide a full service to agricultural, rural and estate clients including advising on property, planning, development, litigation, and agricultural entitlements.

We have been trusted advisors to a number of family and charitable estates for several decades. We handle their property transactions, registration of estates with the Land Registry and increasingly commercial and strategic work as estates seek new ways to diversify beyond existing farming enterprises.

Key facts about our team and the benefits we offer rinclude:

Our clients

Trustees (from individuals through to corporate trustees and charity boards), entrepreneurs, landowners, investors, accountants, independent financial advisors, and other professionals, both onshore and offshore including Wyggeston Hospital Estate, Belvoir Estate, Natural England, National Trust and the Environment Agency.

Our expertise

A team of specialist lawyers working nationally, including lawyers as members of the Country Landowners Association and Agricultural Law Association. We regularly attend their meetings and get involved in discussions on issues relevant to our clients.

Strategic development advice

On strategic land matters such as option promotion agreements, development agreements, planning permission, joint ventures and terminating agricultural tenancies.

Specialist agricultural advice

On maximising eligibility for business property and agricultural property reliefs for inheritance tax purposes, reviews of agricultural estates to optimise tax efficient negotiating transfer of reliefs and retentions in land transactions and regulatory advice.

Estate management

We advise on agricultural and estate management matters, including farm business tenancies, grazing licences, subsidy schemes, minerals and commercial leases.

We attend trustee and management meetings and offer rfocused advice relevant to individual requirements if required. In addition, we work collaboratively with other professionals such as accountants, agents and consultants.

We are members of the Country Landowners Association and Agricultural Law Association, through which we regularly attend meetings and get involved in discussions on issues relevant to our clients.

Our criminal, compliance and regulatory team is well used to reacting to fatal and serious accidents which often raise issues covering police involvement, privileged internal investigations, disclosure to the HSE, access rights to documents and equipment, questioning of employees and contractors and the appeals against improvement and/or prohibition notices.

The team both prosecutes and defends, regularly supporting business and individuals in a wide range of sectors, including those within the agricultural sector.

This includes:

  • Defending companies/partnerships and individuals facing gross negligence/ manslaughter investigations/ health and safety investigations involving commercial and farm related accidents. These could result in investigations by all types of linked government bodies including HSE, Environment Agency, BIS, DEFRA and HMRC.
  • Alleged breaches of the Animal Welfare Act 2006 and the Protection of Badgers Act 1992.
  • Acting for farmers and members of the shooting fraternity in firearms s related offences successful appeals to the crown court for firearms revocation cases.
  • Advising on health and safety aspects applicable to commercial shoots.
  • Local authority trading standards investigations involving milk contamination; animal tagging/ passport breaches; animal cruelty cases involving the importation/ sale/transportation of livestock; alleged breaches of the Food Hygiene Regs 2006; Egg and Chick Regs 2009.

We regularly advise estates clients, individuals, trusts and charities on their corporate and commercial arrangements - including in relation to family office family investment companies, trusteeships over business interests and succession.

For example, on the corporate side in addition to the support we provide in relation to transactions and funding, we advise high net worth individuals on a range of issues relating to their business interests from structuring or realising their investments through to succession issues in relation to owner managed businesses.

We also advise on the setting up and ongoing governance of family investment companies and angel investors on their investments in trading companies and in relation to the use of partnerships and LLPs. We also have a corporate trustee which acts as a trustee in many of our clients’ trust arrangements.

On the commercial side we advise on contracts and arrangements relating to any commercial activities carried out by our clients or activities relating to their properties, business, or assets.

Our property and agricultural team provide a full service to agricultural, rural and estate clients including advising on property, planning, development, litigation, and agricultural entitlements.

We have been trusted advisors to a number of family and charitable estates for several decades. We handle their property transactions, registration of estates with the Land Registry and increasingly commercial and strategic work as estates seek new ways to diversify beyond existing farming enterprises.

Key facts about our team and the benefits we offer rinclude:

Our clients

Trustees (from individuals through to corporate trustees and charity boards), entrepreneurs, landowners, investors, accountants, independent financial advisors, and other professionals, both onshore and offshore including Wyggeston Hospital Estate, Belvoir Estate, Natural England, National Trust and the Environment Agency.

Our expertise

A team of specialist lawyers working nationally, including lawyers as members of the Country Landowners Association and Agricultural Law Association. We regularly attend their meetings and get involved in discussions on issues relevant to our clients.

Strategic development advice

On strategic land matters such as option promotion agreements, development agreements, planning permission, joint ventures and terminating agricultural tenancies.

Specialist agricultural advice

On maximising eligibility for business property and agricultural property reliefs for inheritance tax purposes, reviews of agricultural estates to optimise tax efficient negotiating transfer of reliefs and retentions in land transactions and regulatory advice.

Estate management

We advise on agricultural and estate management matters, including farm business tenancies, grazing licences, subsidy schemes, minerals and commercial leases.

We attend trustee and management meetings and offer rfocused advice relevant to individual requirements if required. In addition, we work collaboratively with other professionals such as accountants, agents and consultants.

We are members of the Country Landowners Association and Agricultural Law Association, through which we regularly attend meetings and get involved in discussions on issues relevant to our clients.

Our criminal, compliance and regulatory team is well used to reacting to fatal and serious accidents which often raise issues covering police involvement, privileged internal investigations, disclosure to the HSE, access rights to documents and equipment, questioning of employees and contractors and the appeals against improvement and/or prohibition notices.

The team both prosecutes and defends, regularly supporting business and individuals in a wide range of sectors, including those within the agricultural sector.

This includes:

  • Defending companies/partnerships and individuals facing gross negligence/ manslaughter investigations/ health and safety investigations involving commercial and farm related accidents. These could result in investigations by all types of linked government bodies including HSE, Environment Agency, BIS, DEFRA and HMRC.
  • Alleged breaches of the Animal Welfare Act 2006 and the Protection of Badgers Act 1992.
  • Acting for farmers and members of the shooting fraternity in firearms s related offences successful appeals to the crown court for firearms revocation cases.
  • Advising on health and safety aspects applicable to commercial shoots.
  • Local authority trading standards investigations involving milk contamination; animal tagging/ passport breaches; animal cruelty cases involving the importation/ sale/transportation of livestock; alleged breaches of the Food Hygiene Regs 2006; Egg and Chick Regs 2009.

Frequently asked questions

Our private client lawyers specialise in providing tailored legal services for wealthy individuals, families, and private entities, covering areas such as personal wealth management, estate planning, and succession.

Private law encompasses legal matters that pertain to the interactions and relationships between individuals within a legal framework. This branch of law is concerned with regulating relationships between private parties and does not involve government entities.