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Trusts come in all shapes and sizes; some can be flexible and can be tailored to your and your family’s needs and some Trusts are deliberately restrictive.

Some Trusts have their own tax regime and some are taxed at the beneficiary’s own marginal rates.

All trusts are taxed in one way or another and sometimes the tax consequences help you decide which trust is best for you.

Trusts are used for all sorts of reasons.  These reasons include:

  • the protection of assets or the protection of beneficiaries. 
  • to protect against the loss of means tested benefits or social care and support packages for vulnerable or disabled beneficiaries. 
  • some Will Trusts legitimately protect your assets from having to be used to pay care home fees.
  • tax planning.


Trusts can be created in your Will and only come into effect when you die.  They can also be created now, to be used during your lifetime.

Although lots of different names are used, most are a variation of the following three types:

  • Bare trusts – eg a bank account for a minor. The parent is the signatory – think trustee – and is the one who makes all the decisions. The money in the account belongs absolutely to the child, and once they turn 18yrs they take control of it.
  • Interests in possession (commonly called life interest) trusts – These give the income from the asset (think rent or dividend or right to live in a property) to one person but the underlying capital is protected for another.
  • Discretionary trusts – These are flexible and powerful. The Trustees have the ultimate decision-making powers about who benefits from a pool of beneficiaries and to what extent they benefit. Your choice of Trustee is important, and the trustees are guided by a Letter of Wishes you write. Frequently used as protective trusts for beneficiaries with disabilities, mental health problems, addictions or other vulnerability. These types of trusts allow trustees to make decisions at the time, rather than try to second guess the future now.
Trusts for vulnerable or disabled persons


Trusts for Vulnerable or Disabled Beneficiaries

Trusts are used to benefit Vulnerable or Learning Disabled beneficiaries for a number of different reasons.

There are only two types of Trust that work in these circumstances, a fully flexible Discretionary Trust and a Disabled / Vulnerable Person’s Trust.

Using the right Trust permits the money or assets in that Trust to be disregarded for the purpose of means testing for benefits or care and support packages.  The money can be used for the long term benefit of your loved one, for example, paying for services that the State won’t fund or for luxuries like holidays etc. and their various benefits or services remain secure.

The choice between Discretionary or Disabled Persons Trusts – which is right for you?

If you have a Disabled or Vulnerable beneficiary, you might assume that a Disabled Persons Trust will be what you need.  But I’m afraid it is not as simple as that.  

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Areas I can help with

I have compiled a selection of frequently asked questions and answers related to wills and will trusts. If you have any questions that I haven’t covered, please get in touch and I’ll be happy to help.

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People often say that getting started is the hardest part of all. Because you are reading this, you should feel encouraged that you have already begun the process, and my job is to help you from here. Simply pick up the phone and call me or drop me a short email.