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Personal Injury Trusts

Personal Injury Trusts protect the compensation awarded to someone who has suffered a personal injury.

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A Personal Injury Trust safeguards the funds received by someone who has suffered a serious injury or clinical negligence and ensures they’re used appropriately to support long-term needs.

What is a Personal Injury Trust?

A Personal Injury Trust, also known as a compensation protection trust, compensation protection plan or benefits protection trust, is a legal arrangement designed to protect the compensation awarded to someone who has suffered a personal injury or medical negligence.

Why should I have a Personal Injury Trust?

If you are in receipt of means tested benefits or feel that you may be in the future, then you should consider having Price Slater Gawne set up a Personal Injury Trust for you. The following are examples of means tested benefits:

  • Universal Credit
  • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Income Support
  • Pension Credit
  • Tax Credits
  • Housing Benefit
  • Council Tax Support
  • Social Fund
  • Local Authority Direct Payments for Carers
  • Local Authority Funding for Care homes

If you have over £6,000 at your disposal, you are at risk of having your benefits reduced. If you have over £16,000 then you are at risk of losing your benefits entirely. If your compensation is paid directly to you then you will be classed as having this money at your disposal.

Therefore, if you are due to receive over £10,000 in compensation you should give serious thought to having Price Slater Gawne set up a Personal Injury Trust on your behalf. If you are expecting to receive less than £10,000, you should discuss your circumstance with us, as it may still be cost effective to set up the trust.

In addition to the short-term benefits of a Personal Injury Trust, you should also take into account whether you may need to go into residential care at some point in the future. The setting up of a Personal Injury Trust will protect your compensation from being taken away by the Local Authority in order to pay for your care.

Are there any other ways to protect my benefits?

No, not really.

What do I need to do?

The setting up of a trust requires two trustees, usually, one of these people would be you so long as you are over 18 and have mental capacity. The other person must be someone you trust, who is over 18 years old. Most of our clients usually have a family member act as trustee with them.

If, however, you would prefer a professional trustee to be involved in the management of your trust, Price Slater Gawne have a Trust Corporation that could act for you. The experience and expertise of a professional trustee can provide significant advantages to you. There would be an additional charge for this service, and it would only be a suitable solution for those who are due to be in receipt of a high value settlements, both to justify the outlay and for the trust corporation to add suitable value. If you would like to consider the Price Slater Gawne Trust Corporation as a trustee or for one of our solicitors to act in an advisory role, our team would be happy to discuss this with you.

As part of the process of creating a Personal Injury Trust, we will take details from you and draft what is known as a trust deed. You are asked to sign this deed with any other trustees that you wish to appoint. We recommend having no more than four trustees (two is usually adequate). Someone then needs to witness both you and the trustees signing the deed. The witness can be anyone over the age of 18, but it cannot be a relative or anyone who is mentioned in the deed.

In line with statutory requirements, we will require two forms of ID from you. Additionally, if you have not used Price Slater Gawne for your compensation claim, we may need an authority to speak with the lawyer handling your claim.

After you, the trustees and your witnesses have signed the trust deed, you return it to us. We will then store the deed for you and provide you with certified copies.

What happens after the Personal Injury Trust is set up?

Once the trust has been set up, you then need to open a bank or building society account in the names of the trustees. The account should be in the name of ‘The Trustees of the [your name] Personal Injury Settlement’.

From previous experience, we have found that some banks and building societies are better than others at setting these accounts up. Some will know what you are asking for straight away and others may not. If you have any questions or concerns regarding setting up an account, please do get in touch with a member of the Price Slater Gawne Wealth Protection team on 03333 058375 and we will assist as much as we can. We can also refer you to trusted financial advisers who will be able support you through the process.

Once the bank account has been set up, the funds from your compensation claim can be transferred.

Do I need to seek financial advice?

Once the funds have been transferred, the money is yours to do with as you wish.

If you have been awarded a substantial sum, we would strongly recommend that you speak to an Independent Financial Adviser (IFA) who will be best placed to advise you on the management of your money.

There are a number of Financial Advisers that we can recommend. However, please note that we do not have any formal relationship with any Financial Advisers and we will not receive any payment for the introduction.

How easily can I access the money held in my Personal Injury Trust?

The money within your trust can be easily accessed, provided that all trustees sign the relevant withdrawal forms. It can also be used to buy items directly, rather than making withdrawals. Additionally, we have assisted clients with the purchase of property from the Personal Injury Trust,

Whilst the money in the trust is to be used for your benefit, it is not advisable to pay yourself a regular income or make regular payments to yourself from the trust. At all times, you should consider how much money you have available to you in your personal accounts.

What can I spend the money within the Personal Injury Trust on?

Once the funds have been transferred, the money is yours to do with as you wish – you can spend the money on anything you like.

What if my Trustees prevent me accessing the funds?

Your trustees are required to act in your best interests, therefore, there may be very good reasons why they do not want you to have money at a particular time.

However, should you disagree with their decision to restrict access to the money within the trust, you have the ultimate power to remove a trustee and appoint someone else in their place.

Can I put more money in the account?

It is essential that the only money placed into the trust account is the compensation that you received from a clinical negligence/serious injury claim.

Do I need to inform the Benefits Agency of the existence of the Trust?

Yes, the Benefits Agency must be informed about the existence of the Personal Injury Trust – we would do this for you as part of our normal service.

Will the Trustees have to complete an income tax return?

The trust will be a ‘bare’ trust, which means that, notwithstanding the existence of the trust, you are immediately entitled to the trust fund. In such circumstances, the trustees do not need to submit a tax return, as any income from the trust should be included on your personal tax return, if you need to complete one.

In the event that the trust is not a ‘bare’ trust, then it may be necessary to complete a tax return, but we will advise you if this is the case.

Why choose Price Slater Gawne?

Working closely with a solicitor experienced in Personal Injury Trusts will ensure compliance with legal requirements and the specific needs of the injured person.

Our specialist team are experienced in setting up Trusts for clients in line with their personal circumstances. If you would like to speak to a member of the team, please contact 03333 058375 or email wealthprotection@psg-law.co.uk.

Meet the Team

  • Laura Bywater

    Partner, Head of Wealth Protection

    Laura Bywater

    t:07939 121341

    e: laura.bywater@psg-law.co.uk

  • Gareth Williams

    Partner, Court of Protection & Wealth Protection

    Gareth Williams

    t:07497 839796

    e: gareth.williams@psg-law.co.uk

  • Nina Sperring

    Partner, Wealth Protection

    Nina Sperring

    t:07301 218133

    e: nina.sperring@psg-law.co.uk

  • Gail Galloway

    Senior Associate, Wealth Protection

    Gail Galloway

    t:07399 781788

    e: gail.galloway@psg-law.co.uk

  • Lydia Palmer

    Legal Assistant, Wealth Protection

    Lydia Palmer

    t:07399 565976

    e: lydia.palmer@psg-law.co.uk

  • Marie Fletcher

    Legal Assistant, Wealth Protection

    Marie Fletcher

    t:07399 803662

    e: marie.fletcher@psg-law.co.uk

  • Suzanna Warburton

    Paralegal. Wealth Protection

    Suzanna Warburton

    t:07946 579067

    e: suzanna.warburton@psg-law.co.uk

  • Alexandra Hales

    Paralegal, Court of Protection and Wealth Protection

    Alexandra Hales

    t:07957 958134

    e: alexandra.hales@psg-law.co.uk

What Our Clients Say About Us...

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  • "Gareth Williams, can give advice to HNW individuals with complex planning needs and also acts as a professional deputy for individuals who have been awarded significant personal injury and medical negligence claims, technically very strong and has a great understanding of the needs of the client and how to provide the appropriate solutions and service." Legal 500


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