Clarkslegal LLP - Solicitors in Reading and London

Our People

Stuart Hyden
Senior Solicitor

I am a Private client lawyer working from the firm’s Reading Office, specialising in Wills, Trusts, Probate applications and Mental Capacity issues.

I deal with the preparation of all types of Wills from simple Wills to those containing complex trusts to cover the difficulties associated with;

  • Long term care and asset preservation
  • Inheritance tax planning
  • Family difficulties arising from either divorce or financial concerns
  • Providing for minor and / or disabled beneficiaries

I am able to offer a general overview of the Inheritance Tax rules to ensure that my clients make full use of the exemptions and allowances available to them.

I have been advising on and preparing, registering and exercising Lasting Powers of Attorney since their inception in 2007.

Lasting Powers of Attorney are important documents. They offer people a mechanism to appoint someone of their choosing to manage their Property & Financial affairs and Health and Welfare issues if they were to lose capacity as a result of either accident or illness.

They can only be made whilst someone has the mental capacity to fully understand them, which is why I normally recommend clients to consider making these at the same time as making their Wills.

If someone were to lose capacity without having first made a Power of Attorney then it is often necessary to make an application to the Court of Protection for a Deputy to be appointed to manage their finances.

Although Deputyship applications are significantly more time consuming and costly than the Power of Attorney option, I have successfully guided numerous clients through this complicated process.

I am able to assist with all aspects of Estate Administration following death. This includes:-

  • Applications for Grants of Representation
  • The preparation of Inland Revenue accounts
  • Advising on and preparing Deeds of Variation
  • Calculating and paying any Inheritance Tax due
  • Completing detailed estate accounts
  • Transferring properties after death

Where a property is purchased jointly by two or more people, they often wish to protect their respective financial contributions. A Declaration of Trust offers a practical solution to this and I have drafted many such Declarations of Trust for my clients over the years.

I qualified as a Solicitor in 2009 having completed a degree in law at the University of Southampton followed by the Legal Practice Course at the College of Law in Guildford.

I have always lived in Reading and qualified at a local Firm before working at the Financial Ombudsman Service in Canary Wharf for two years. This gave me a thorough understanding of financial products and services which has been a great asset to have when administering estates and looking to invest and manage trust funds.

Having worked for the Financial Ombudsman Service for two years, I returned to private practice. I began work at a major Southampton Law Firm, where I stayed for nearly three years before returning to my home town of Reading to begin working for Clarkslegal in February 2014.

Recent work includes:

  • Obtaining a grant of probate in the Isle of Man
  • Rectifying a problem Will
  • Administering estates with a foreign element
  • Dealing with the transfer of an unregistered property to the beneficiary of a Will where the deeds could not be located
  • Making a specific application to the Court of Protection for the appointment of an additional Trustee of Land where the sole owner had lost capacity and the family were trying to sell the property
  • Preparing a form of secret trust for a testator who wanted to ensure that his friends and family members would not find out exactly how he had decided to administer his estate.