Latest News & Blogs

February 18, 2019
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10 Recommendations for couple considering divorce

Clients ask many questions when they meet to discuss their separation or divorce with us. Whilst every case is different, we do highlight some things they need to think about. Here are our top ten recommendations. Many clients tell us that their decision to separate has not come as a surprise to their spouse or partner or to their family and friends. It can be a challenge to end a long-term relationship. Talking openly to your spouse or partner as well as your family and friends might help make the process less stressful. Life changes can be stressful and emotionally draining. Think about seeking support from a counsellor or family therapist. They have experience of supporting couples who are going through a separation and divorce. We have a number of contacts and other resources that might be of help to you. It is very important to know where you stand […]
February 18, 2019
mywill

6 Reasons why people don’t make Wills

Do you know that nearly 60% of people in Scotland don’t have a Will?  When we realised this, we started looking at the different reasons clients and others have given us for avoiding what is probably one of the most important things anyone should do. Before we go on, here’s an interesting fact: most people spend more time planning their holiday than they do planning for their future. Here’s another thing: there’s no better way to get peace of mind than knowing your loved ones will be secure when the inevitable happens – hopefully many years in the future! So, here we go, here are 6 reasons we’ve found why people don’t make a Will. It’s too morbid This is one of the main reasons people cite for not making a Will. They think it is morbid talking about what will happen when they die. Unsurprisingly, we take a very […]
February 18, 2019
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Additional Dwelling Supplement – its only a 1% increase

When Derek Mackay, the Scottish Finance Secretary announce in his Scottish Budget in December 2018, that he was increasing the Additional Dwelling Supplement element of Land and Building Transaction Tax from 3% to 4%, many people thought “it’s only 1% and it doesn’t apply to me”. The other aspect of this increase that’s worrying is the misconception that this tax only applies to people buying second homes or those involved in the buy-to-let market. Unfortunately, the Additional Dwelling Supplement has some unintended consequences for the “normal” property market. To understand the anomalies, we need to understand what the Additional Dwelling Supplement is, why it was introduced and how it works. What is the Additional Dwelling Supplement? The Additional Dwelling Supplement is a tax applied in the purchase of a second or subsequent residential property. It is payable in addition to any Land & Buildings Transaction Tax payable (and even if […]
February 18, 2019
for-sale-sign

Selling Your Home? Here’s why you should use a Solicitor Estate Agent

Anyone who’s ever sold a house will be familiar with the phrase “selling your home is stressful” – and it is. What you don’t need to find out after you’ve received an offer that there are technical difficulties that could have been picked up before your house when on the market.  Things like problems with certificates and titles and other problems that might prevent you from selling. It has always been a mystery to us why estate agents don’t need any qualifications before setting up in business.  It’s also strange that there’s no formal regulatory authority to oversee what they do and enforce any regulations. There are various “trade” or “professional” bodies but, unlike the Law Society of Scotland, they have no regulatory oversight powers. Over the last few years, we’ve seen the emergence of online estate agents, you know, the ones that are cheap and cheerful, where you pay […]
January 9, 2019
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Glasgow’s First Female Lawyer – The story of Madge Easton Anderson

2019 is the centenary of the Sex Disqualification (Removal) Act 1919 which paved the way for women to become lawyers for the first time. Check out the article in Glasgow Live. https://www.glasgowlive.co.uk/news/history/glasgow-uks-first-female-lawyer-15648074        

TAX RELIEF FOR FIRST-TIME BUYERS

The abolition of SDLT for first -time buyers in England and Wales was a welcome Budget announcement. From 22 November 2017, first-time buyers will be relieved from SDLT on the first 300k paid for their property, so long as the value of the property does not exceed 500k. The measure is expected to benefit 95% of first-time buyers saving them an average of £1660 each.

In a similar move, the Scottish Government announced in it’s budget that it will be introducing LBTT relief on the first 175k paid by first-time buyers in Scotland.

Although considerably less than the SDLT relief, this is expected to cover most properties in Scotland, and will exclude 80% of first-time buyers from LBTT entirely. Additionally, as there is no upper limit on the value of the property, the tax paid by all first-time buyers will be reduced.