The Anthony Seddon Fund Will Week 12th – 16th November 2018

 

Make an appointment with us to have your Will professionally drafted during the week of 12th – 16th November 2018 and instead of taking our usual fee for this service, all we ask is that you make a donation to The Anthony Seddon Fund. Suggested donations are £95 for a basic* single Will and £150 for a pair of basic mirror Wills. 

About the Charity

 

The Anthony Seddon Fund is a mental health charity based in Ashton-under-Lyne. The charity was established in June 2014 by Donna and Brian Thomas after the death by suicide of their son, Anthony following a long struggle with bi-polar disorder. 

The Anthony Seddon Fund provide a range of activities from their centre on George Street in Ashton-under-Lyne including a daily drop-in. Your donations will allow the charity to continue to fund these activities and continue to provide much needed support to the community. 

To make an appointment, please contact us on 01457 835597 or email info@haroldstock.com 

 

*Basic will – The majority of people only require a basic will. However, if your total assets are over the Inheritance tax threshold or you require trust to be set up as part of your will or more complex estate planning, these will fall outside of a basic will and a further fee will be payable. We will of course advise you in relation to this when you attend your appointment and agree any separate charge with you before any work is undertaken.


Don’t be afraid to get a second opinion – case summary

After a fall down some badly constructed stairs in a department store in Manchester,  Audrey needed complicated shoulder surgery at a time when she should have been fit enough to help her husband cope with his deteriorating health.

The department store initially tried to pass the buck back to Audrey (suggesting that the fall wouldn’t have happened if she’d been more careful!) The first firm of solicitors representing her didn’t seem to progress her case effectively (and eventually she was advised that they had closed down). Very sadly, around this time, Audrey’s husband passed away.

Audrey wasn’t sure it was worth proceeding with her claim but with an office very close to Audrey’s home, we were able to meet with her whenever she needed to go through the paperwork and to discuss the ridiculous suggestions made by the other side. At the same time, we talked through what would help our client to look after her house and garden taking in to account the physical restrictions her shoulder injury brought with it – for example, getting quotes for the cost of a gardener (and artificial grass) as well as for window and a house cleaners.

Audrey had the patience to stick with the advice we gave in turning down several offers that weren’t enough to compensate her for the pain and suffering she had put up with so far, or for the cost of employing people to support her active life going forwards

Debra Woolfson , a director and solicitor with over 30 years experience in personal injury and clinical negligence handled Audrey’s claim and says:

“Audrey’s stoicism, enthusiasm for life and her good humour, at what must have been a really difficult time for her made it a pleasure to help her to get a settlement that reflected the seriousness of the injury and should give her the support she needs to overcome any physical limitations that resulted from her fall”

Debra recently received this letter from Audrey

 

If you would like a second opinion from our personal injury experts, please do not hesitate to contact Debra Woolfson or Kirsty Dunn on 0161 456 5012 or fill in the contact form on this page.

 

 


Will Aid 2018

 

November is Will Aid month and Francesca Rigby from our Stockport office will be taking part this year. Will Aid is an annual fundraising event involving 9 of the UK’s leading charities. With the support of the legal profession, donating their time and skill, people are encouraged to have a will professionally written by a Solicitor whilst raising funds for charity. 

For a suggested donation of £95 for a basic single will or £150 for basic mirror wills, Francesca will meet with you at our Stockport office to take your instructions and then prepare a will specifically tailored to suit your needs. 

For more information on Will Aid and to help you prepare for the meeting, Will Aid have produced a helpful guide and Will Planner which can be found here

To make an appointment to see Francesca during Will Aid month, please contact us on 0161 456 5012 or complete the contact form on this page. 


Private Client team boosted by new recruit

Harold Stock & Co are delighted to welcome Francesca Rigby into their successful Private Client team. Francesca will be based in the firm’s Stockport office. 

Francesca studied Criminology and Social Policy at Manchester University and then went on to study at BPP Law School achieving commendations in both her Graduate Diploma in Law and Legal Practice Course before qualifying in September 2012.

Since qualifying, Francesca has gone on to specialise in all Private Client matters including all types of Wills, whether simple Mirror Wills to Wills that cater for more complex inheritance tax, all Probate matters including both taxable and non-taxable estates, Lasting Powers of Attorney, Court of Protection work and Trusts.

In February 2018,  Francesca successfully completed the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP) course and is now a full member of STEP. STEP is a global professional association for practitioners who specialise in Private Client matters. As a full STEP member, Francesca is recognised as an expert in the field of Wills & Probate with proven qualifications and experience.

As well has being a STEP member, Francesca is a Full Accredited member of Solicitors for the Elderly. In order to be a fully accredited SFE member, lawyers must have a minimum of three years’ experience advising in areas of older client law and have completed the Older Client Care in Practice Award – a qualification which demonstrates the specialist client care skills that enable lawyers to advise and support older and vulnerable clients. Members are also required to continuously update their knowledge with training and produce an annual statement of competence, which ensures they maintain their expertise.

SFE

The most popular day for marriage

Most popular day for marriages sees local Solicitor campaign to raise awareness of the common-law marriage myth

Saturday 18 August has been reported as the most common day in 2018 to tie the knot in the UK. However, since the early 1970s, the number of people actually getting married has steadily decreased, dropping a further 3.4% last year. There have been many theories about why marriage rates are falling, but regardless the fact remains that fewer people are formalising their relationship.

In 2016, there were 3.3m cohabiting couples or around 6.6million cohabiting adults. This is officially the fastest growing family type, more than doubling from 1.5million couples just 20 years ago. Yet, a 2017 ComRes survey showed that only one couple in three knew there was no such thing as common law marriage.

The issue is widespread, with nearly 98% of professionals from family justice group Resolution reported having worked with a cohabiting couple who they were unable to help. A further 90% said the couples are often surprised to find out about their lack of rights.

To help raise awareness of this issue Karen Kenyon from Harold Stock & Co. Solicitors is hoping to raise awareness and encourage cohabiting couples to take steps protect themselves and their families.

Karen explains: “If an unmarried couple breaks up, they would not necessarily be entitled to share in (what they thought were their) joint assets, such as a house they may have made significant financial contributions to, if they aren’t named as an owner on the deed. This is the same regardless of how long they have been together or whether they have children.”

“Government has the opportunity to update legislation, to bring our laws in line with modern family types. Caroline Lucas raised an early day motion in November, which has already been supported by 23 cross-party MPs.”

“In the absence of action from government, these couples need to know that they are not given rights through common law marriage, so they can take appropriate actions to protect themselves. For example, signing a cohabitation agreement is an easy and cost effective way to get financial peace of mind without getting married or forming a civil partnership.”


Meet our Family Team


Karen Kenyon image

Karen Kenyon

Solicitor

T: 0161 682 2400

kk@haroldstock.com

Dawn Atkinson image

Dawn Atkinson

Family Executive

T: 0161 682 2400

da@haroldstock.com


Cut whiplash injuries with the headrest test

Whiplash injuries and claims can be avoided if drivers and passengers do a simple test this Injury Prevention Day (15 August).

The Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) with support from motoring safety experts Thatcham Research, is urging car users to protect themselves by making sure their headrests are in the correct position.

 “Half of all car crashes in England result in a whiplash injury and some of these could be avoided, along with the resulting compensation claims,” said APIL’s president Brett Dixon. APIL is a not-for-profit organisation which campaigns to prevent needless injuries.

“Your headrest can’t do its job if you haven’t adjusted it to fit you,” said Brett. “It’s like leaving the batteries out of a smoke detector. “To test your headrest is very simple,” Brett explained. “Make sure it is as close to the back of your head as possible, ideally touching. The top of the headrest should also be as high as the top of your head. Place your hand on top of your head to check.

“It is easy to forget, but we hope drivers will make a point of doing the headrest test this Injury Prevention Day,” said Brett.

Matthew Avery, director of research at Thatcham Research said: “Whiplash is the most common injury in car accidents, and the correct position of the seat’s head restraint is the key factor in protecting people from these types of injuries. We’d recommend that the next time you get in your car, check that the headrest is positioned as high as the top of the head. Where possible, it should also be tilted as close to the back of the head as possible. Touching the head is best. In cars where the head restraint is not adjustable, making the seat more upright can help.

“It’s also really important to remember that whiplash can occur in the back seat as well. So remember to adjust for each rear occupant as well and  check this for every journey. No one passenger is the same and it needs to be tailored to fit them on every journey.”

If you have been injured in a car accident or any other accident and would like advice from a professional yet approachable lawyer, please do not hesitate to contact our specialists, Debra Woolfson or Kirsty Dunn.

 

Meet our Personal Injury Team


Kirsty Dunn image

Kirsty Dunn

Chartered Legal Executive

T: 01457 835597

kmd@haroldstock.com

Debra Woolfson image

Debra Woolfson

Director

T: 0161 456 5012

dw@haroldstock.com


Stick or Twist – Is it a gamble to change solicitor?

As a specialist team with over 40 years experience in getting our clients the support and compensation that they deserve. We have seen a nervousness about asking for a second opinion. Whilst it has become the norm to change car insurer if you can find better cover, we are sometimes less confident about checking that we are getting all that we are entitled to when pursuing a claim for injuries suffered through no fault of our own.

Changing solicitors is as simple as calling a member of our team for a chat. If we can support you to get the best result possible, then all that needs to be done is to complete a simple transfer form with you and we will sort the rest.

Why would you need to consider changing solicitor? Here are some of the reasons we have seen:-

  • You have never met your solicitor.
  • Your solicitor doesn’t take your calls.
  • The firm you are using is closing down.
  • The person dealing with your claim appears inexperienced.
  • The solicitor acting for you doesn’t believe you can win.
  • You don’t feel that you are listened to – You feel part of a process rather than the effects of your injuries and losses being considered in the unique way that they should be.
  • You feel you are being ‘pushed’ to settle before you are fully recovered.
  • Your solicitor was chosen for you by your insurer, as you have legal expenses cover.

There is nothing to lose by speaking to us, there is no charge and you are not committing yourself to anything. The examples set out below may reassure you that we can, as your local solicitors, with specialist knowledge help you to sort out your claim.

John, a local factory worker, was involved in an accident that made back problems he had always suffered from much worse. As he had accident cover with his house insurance, those insurers chose a solicitor from a national firm for him. Unfortunately, they ignored his previous back problem and kept calling him to get him to agree to settle for £4,000, on the basis that his back symptoms were a new problem, ignoring his concerns. John called into our office and after discussions completed the form that enabled us to get his file which showed that he was right to question the advice that he had been given. With more detailed medical investigations, and after getting John some physiotherapy we were able to negotiate a settlement for his injuries and losses at over £10,000. John has continued to turn to Harold Stock & Co for all of his legal needs and says:

“Kirsty and the team treated me as a person, not a number. She was available at times that suited my shifts. She was quickly able to sort things for me and got a great result.”

John has referred family members and friends to Harold Stock & Co, having confidence in the service we provide.

Sharon, a company director, had suffered really poor treatment at her local hospital which affected her health and her ability to work. She decided that it was important to make a claim as she didn’t want others to go through the same trauma and pain that she had experienced. She initially chose a solicitor by responding to an advert on the TV. She never met her solicitor and became concerned when her calls were not returned, and when she did speak to her solicitor he didn’t seem to understand how her deteriorating health had affected her work. Sharon knew a member of our staff and met up with our medical negligence specialist, Debra, who got all the financial issues sorted with the assistance of an independent accountant. She also prepared detailed evidence so that the full effects of the delayed diagnosis, that the hospital accepted was its fault, were clear to everyone. Her settlement was nearly 12 times the amount that it had been suggested she settle for before the transfer. Sharon commented:

“Thank you for all your hard work in getting the settlement. It is very much appreciated and you have restored my faith in solicitors and the legal system”.

If you would like a second opinion in relation to your current claim, please contact Debra Woolfson or Kirsty Dunn on 01457 835597 or email info@haroldstock.com


Mossley Hollins Futures Event 2018

Headteacher, Stuart Marshall with Kirsty Dunn (R) and Alex Newman (L)

 

Former pupils, Kirsty Dunn and Alex Newman went back to school this morning to take part in the Mossley Hollins High School Futures Event. This is the 4th year running that Kirsty and Alex have assisted the school by leading their Year 10 pupils through a mock interview scenario. 

The interviews are structured to be as true to life as possible and constructive written feedback is provided by the interviewers to the pupils. 

Once again, Kirsty and Alex have commented on how confident the students are in the interviews despite their nerves. 

 


Things to Consider before Buying a Property

Buying a property can be a stressful process, especially if you are not prepared before you decide to buy. Having a plan set in place before you start the hunt is key for getting the best out of your property search. Harold Stock and Co are here with seven things to consider before buying a property. Continue reading…