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Wills, Inheritance and Succession Planning for Farm Owners

At Lanyon Bowdler, we recognise that rural and farming businesses are unique when it comes to succession planning, Will writing and inheritance tax, and provide a bespoke service to ensure personal circumstances are taken into consideration.

Expertise and specialism are fundamental in this area of the law, and as one of the NFU’s recommended agricultural law firms, Lanyon Bowdler can guarantee expert advice from some of the sector’s leading legal professionals.

Having long delivered services across Shropshire, Herefordshire and beyond, we provide a level of industry knowledge and local insight that is seldom found anywhere else. Many of our solicitors have personal experience of living and working on farms, combining legal expertise with a life-long passion to ensure the very best legal advice for you, your family and your business.

Legal Expertise

Effective succession planning is vital for the continuing profitability of your farm and to ensure your family is able to capitalise on the various tax reliefs that are available. Our services cover all areas of this complex and often difficult area including:

Succession planning advice

As a farm owner, it is essential that you plan ahead to ensure the smooth transition of your family business to the next generation and we can advise you accordingly. This will help avoid any family disputes that may arise due to the division of assets, and will ensure the farm continues to be profitable and successful.

Will drafting services

A Will is essential in any circumstance but in particular where there is a farm and much-needed family business at stake. Without a Will, the legal division and distribution of your estate, including your farm, land and other business assets won’t take into account the needs of your family. The expert team of lawyers at Lanyon Bowdler appreciate the importance of handing down the family business in accordance with your wishes for the farm and can prepare and draft your Will, tailored to your specific circumstances and future plans for the farm and land.

We pride ourselves on close client relationships and will visit your farm and meet your family to make sure that we thoroughly understand your business, your requirements and the needs of everyone involved.

Tax relief advice and applications

Even if your estate exceeds the threshold for inheritance tax, there are certain exemptions and reliefs in place for agricultural property and businesses to enable them to be passed on tax-free in a Will or as a lifetime gift.

The criteria for being eligible for these exemptions include that:

  • The property must be part of a working farm
  • You must have owned the property for at least two years, or seven years if it has been rented out
  • The property is classed as agricultural land or pasture

You cannot rely on automatically passing your assets to the next generation for free, however, although your farming business may be eligible for these exemptions, it is a particularly complicated area of the law that requires specialist legal advice. Our agricultural team can help to ensure your family aren’t left with an overwhelming tax bill which could ultimately impact on the future survival of your farm business, by helping you understand what tax relief is available to you and helping you with your applications.

Our experience in negotiating with HMRC for both Agricultural Property Relief (APR) and Business Property Relief (BPR) will help secure the future of your farming business for generations to come.

Diversification advice

Farmers and landowners are increasingly exploring the potential to boost their income through diversification of their land and property. We can help you with all matters relating to diversification including planning implications, employment and tenancy agreements, business structures, partnerships and inheritance tax implications.

Estate administration

Our probate solicitors can help in all areas of estate administration and recognise the need to work quickly and efficiently to minimise stress and worry.

Contact Lanyon Bowdler Solicitors

With branches in Shrewsbury, Bromyard, Hereford, Ludlow, Oswestry and Telford, and with a meeting room in Conwy, we are ideally situated to meet the needs of the surrounding towns, villages and rural communities including the neighbouring counties of Gloucestershire, Worcestershire, Staffordshire, Cheshire and Powys, and Mid and North Wales.

Our agricultural lawyers are more than happy to come and meet you at your farm or place of work, so gaining expert advice on all aspects of farming law couldn’t be easier. Contact the team or complete the online enquiry form, and someone will be in touch.

Testimonials

He was always calm, efficient, prompt and helpful.

- Rev M Thomas & Prof K Thomas, Oxfordshire

Quality of care and sensitivity.

- Mrs C Shuker, Shrewsbury

The professionalism of the service received and the expert knowledge of the solicitor who handled my case.

- Mr K Whitelaw, Wolverhampton

Very personable solicitor who spoke in plain English and was approachable.

- Mr J Hughes, Church Stretton

Enthusiastic approach to handling cases.

- Tomlinson's Dairies Ltd, Wrexham

Quotes

Natasha Gibbons was very easy to talk to, I felt at ease with her, and she always kept me up to date with the case. She has provided excellent service throughout.

- Mrs C Roberts, Gwynedd

Ease of contact, understanding of business context. An excellent and pragmatic approach to a relatively complex business transfer.

- Mr D Coull, Shrewsbury

I found them straightforward and polite, and a nice receptionist, that helped put me at ease.

- Mr R Francis, Ludlow

The use of clear modern language and presentation with legal jargon kept to a minimum where possible.

- Mr P King & Mrs D King, Prestigne

Dealing with one person when possible. Clear, simple advice.

- Mrs S A Flynn, London

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