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Legacy protection services for charities

We know how increasingly vital legacy income is for charities, and how important it is to protect it – while navigating through the issues of risk, reputation, and regulation.

That’s why we’re committed to working with you; whether that’s through tailored and bespoke training, drop-in clinics, legal support or just a forum to share ideas, we can help.

As a full-service, top 100 ranked law firm we can offer a unique perspective on legacy administration and legacy and trust disputes and with teams based across England and Wales we can assign work based on urgency, complexity, PR and price sensitivity, tailored to your charity’s needs.

We provide no-nonsense, clear and pragmatic advice to ensure that any solution is tailored to your charity and case, including understanding the importance of specific charity considerations such as PR and the impact that this can have on future income. We also ensure that you are kept up to date every step of the way.

Here at Hugh James we’re also strong advocates of “putting your money where your mouth is” which is why we think it’s really important to support charities both as a firm (we appoint two Hugh James “Charities of the Year”) and by encouraging and facilitating our staff to support the charities and causes that mean something to them with two CSR days for each employee.

Our specialist services

We advise on:

Why use us?

  • Dedicated charities team backed by a full-service law firm
  • ILM Corporate Partner
  • With one of the largest Private Wealth teams in England and Wales we also work with a number of external industry professionals to offer additional support
  • Dedicated in-house training to Legacy teams
  • Public relations, brand and intellectual property expertise
  • Innovative and bespoke pricing

Key contact

Roman Kubiak TEP


Roman Kubiak is a Partner and Head of the market leading Private Wealth Disputes team.

He advises across the whole spectrum of private wealth disputes, with a particular focus on high value, complex and cross-border disputes including: trust disputes, breach of trust claims and applications to remove trustees; will disputes, particularly those with an international element; claims under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975; and claims for equitable relief under proprietary estoppel, constructive trusts and resulting trusts.

Our experience

Hugh James advises on construction of charitable legacy

We advised in relation to the construction and validity of specific gifts of properties in a will to a leading cancer charity with the condition that the properties were retained and not sold. The residuary beneficiary was another leading cancer charity.

We provided advice to the charities on whether or not the condition was valid given the general rule that a condition attached to a property which purports to restrict a donee’s right of “alienation” is void as “repugnant” to the gift.

We were delighted to be able to help the charities negotiate a compromise which avoided both High Court action or an application to the Charity Commission.

Unlocking a legacy – How we secured a legacy gift for the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama

Advising national charities in relation to a lost will claim

We are advising two national charities in relation to a claim relating to a lost will of a donor. The claim requires detailed knowledge of probate registry practice and procedure and careful negotiation to ensure that the charities’ legacies are maximized.

Advising a regional branch of a large elder care charity

We successfully recovered a legacy for a regional branch of a large national charity which had remained unpaid for many years with a single letter.

Recovering a six figure legacy for a children’s hospital charity

Our Legacy Disputes team successfully recovered a legacy of c.£250,000 for a children’s hospital charity after issues were raised about the construction of a legacy. After negotiations with the executors and other charities, the legacy was recovered while avoiding costly court proceedings.

Our clients

Clients we have acted for and helped to recover legacies include:

  • Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama
  • AgeUK Somerset
  • Noah’s Ark Children’s Hospital
  • Shine
  • The Eritrean Orthodox Church
  • The Representative Body of the Church in Wales

Next steps

We’re here to get things moving. Drop a message to one of our experts and we’ll get straight back to you.

Call us: 033 3016 2222

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