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The Archers: A Good Will Tale

View profile for Paul Hajek
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Many of us were shocked and some outraged by the death of Nigel Pargetter, a much loved character in the Archers.

Nigel’s home and business, Lower Loxley, sounds like a very desirable establishment and Nigel was obviously keen to keep it in the family and had planned this carefully with a will that was aimed to maintain the property in the family, but at the same time provide for his wife and if possible avoid inheritance tax.

The will he used included a trust which ensured that the property was available for the use of his widow but that ultimately the property was to pass to his son.

Nigel dealt separately with his daughter’s provision, which may seem unusual and a little traditional, but does sometimes happen in business or farming families where it is impossible to split an asset into viable economic units between potential beneficiaries.

However, without delving too deeply into Nigel’s motivations, the immediate position is that his widow has the security to continue living at Lower Loxley which is important and there is no charge to inheritance tax to face on his estate.

Nigel may also have left a letter of direction to the executors of his will which is intended to guide them as to how he would like them to deal with his estate on an ongoing basis.

The content of such letters can be very useful to the executors and can give them the guidance they need when it comes to dealing with important decisions.

The choice of executors is clearly very important and ideally they need to be chosen on the basis that they will act in the best interests of the beneficiaries of the estate without any regard to personal interest and they also need to be completely impartial in their decisions.

Frequently trusts of this nature do not continue for the lifetime of the surviving widow. Commonly they are broken up for a variety of reasons most commonly because of mitigating eventual tax burden or to take into account changing circumstances of the beneficiaries.

However, Nigel has reminded us that trusts are still an important tax planning tool.

For more information and advice on how you too can provide for your family with a well crafted Will contact Hilary McIlveen on 01454 312125 or by email Hilary [at]