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Joseph Smith is a Probate Solicitor at Co-op Legal Services in Manchester.
Joseph deals with all aspects of Probate and Estate Administration, including advising Personal Representatives about, and obtaining, Grants of Representation, dealing with assets of the Estate and taxation in particular Inheritance Tax, Capital Gains Tax and Income Tax.
Joseph also offers additional services such as drafting of Instruments of Variation. Furthermore, because of his background in more general private client legal work, Joseph can provide general legal advice on related aspects such as Will interpretation and possible challenges that may be made against an Estate.
Where a loved one has sadly died, this can be a difficult and emotional time, and this can be exacerbated by the fact that Probate and Estate Administration law is complex, often incorporating rules which seem outdated or even on first glance counter-intuitive. From a practical standpoint, there are a great many tasks that need to be attended to both big and small, from dealing with the redirection of the post to ensuring the house is properly insured to negotiating with the tax authorities to settle the Inheritance Tax bill.
Joseph believes that at such a time, he and his colleagues offer an efficient, friendly and approachable service which relieves families of the burden of dealing with the issues arising from an Estate on their own. Families can rest assured that the Estate will be dealt with professionally, carefully and in a way which will fully deal with and resolve all known issues so that there are no “nasty surprises” in the future, for example an unexpected bill from HMRC or the Department for Work and Pensions.
Joseph enjoys helping his clients to come to realistic and practical solutions to the problems that do sometimes arise in administering Estates, always in a friendly, approachable and sensitive manner. He is committed to helping the administration of Estates to run as smoothly as possible and to break down and explain complex legal concepts clearly. He also enjoys the challenges that this area often presents, for instance with regards to difficult and unusual tax situations. Every family is different and therefore every case is different, which provides great variety in his day-to-day work.
Joseph studied law at the University of Hull and completed his Legal Practice Course at the College of Law in York. He subsequently re-located to Chester where he undertook a two-year training contract at a Cheshire and North Wales law firm.
Upon qualification as a Solicitor in 2013, Joseph specialised in Will writing and Probate. Following a period of focussing primarily on Probate, Joseph joined the team of Probate Solicitors at Co-op Legal Services in 2016.
The Law Society
The Law Society Private Client Section
Student member of the Society of Trusts and Estates Practitioners (STEP).
When Not Working
Joseph enjoys reading, playing video games and attempting to play the guitar. He is also a regular and avid cinema-goer. Aside from that, he enjoys cooking and spending time with friends and family.