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Peter Hopkins

peter hopkins

Peter is Mercers’ Managing Partner and advises individual clients or couples on a wide range of matters including;

  • Wills and Letters of Wishes, including choice of guardians
  • Powers of Attorney including Lasting Powers of Attorney for Health & Welfare and LPAs for Property & Financial Affairs
  • Probate, and dealing with deceased estates, including advice on income tax, CGT, and IHT in this context
  • Advice on Deeds of Variation
  • Advice on Estate Accounts and Trust Accounts
  • Advice on setting up trusts, administering trusts, including deeds of appointment or advancement, and winding up trusts
  • General IHT tax planning advice including the use of statutory annual exemptions, normal expenditure out of income, lifetime gifts, use of Business Property Relief or Agricultural Property Relief
  • Advice about care home fees

In particular, Peter specialises in advising clients about Contentious Trusts and Estates, advising how to protect a Will from being challenged, and in particular advising about claims for;

  • Lack of testamentary capacity
  • Lack of knowledge and approval
  • Duress and undue influence
  • Fraudulent calumny
  • Mutual Wills
  • Inheritance Act claims under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependents) Act 1975

Peter also has advised a number of clients about cross-border estates, dealing with countries including France, Spain, Australia, Switzerland and America. As a result of this he has built connections with Lawyers in those countries who can assist.

Peter is an Associate Member of Solicitors for the Elderly (SFE) and a Full Member of the Society of Trust & Estate Practitioners (STEP). He has had four articles accepted for publication by the Solicitors Journal, on contentious probate matters such as Mutual Wills and on the 2017 Ilott v Mitson Supreme Court judgment. He has been accepted as a Registered Member by the committee of the Association of Contentious Trust and Probate Specialists (ACTAPS).

Peter graduated from Emmanuel College, Cambridge, and after two years with Price Waterhouse, he qualified as a solicitor with a Lincoln’s Inn firm, Dawsons, before moving to a Westminster firm, Radcliffes. Peter joined Mercers in 2000 and became a partner in 2005 and Managing Partner in 2022.

Peter also publishes updates and comments on the latest court cases and developments in the law through the firm’s Twitter account @DisputedWills. For updates on Cross-Border issues, follow the Twitter account.

“Peter has gone above and beyond with his informative, sympathetic and extremely wise advice” – Mrs H of Oxfordshire.

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