Making gifts of assets

Clients might ask for advice about transferring property or investments to their next of kin, family members, or friends before their death as a means of planning for their future care.

A solicitor could be implicated if they are found to have aided a client's deliberate deprivation of assets. Whether the client wishes to gift assets or to offer them at significant undervalue, you must advise them about the benefits and risks of doing so and clarify your role and responsibilities in the process.

Some clients may receive advice from non-solicitor advice services that includes unjustified claims about gifting of assets to avoid the assets being considered for inheritance tax or care fees liability. You should consider seeking specialist advice if you feel it necessary to do so.

This practice note is the Law Society’s view of good practice in this area, and is not legal advice. For more information see the legal status.