Fletchers Financial Investment Solutions
A new service offered by Fletchers Solicitors
Fletchers Solicitors has teamed up with Frenkel Topping to launch a new venture, Fletchers Financial Investment Solutions. Our aim is to provide the highest quality financial service advice, support and recommendations, predominantly to the recipients of medical negligence and personal injury awards.
We provide advice to our customers at the pre-settlement stage and financial guidance following the settlement of claims.
Our aim is to provide the highest quality professional service and ensure our customers are able to achieve their goals, aims and needs following what is often a life-changing event.
We review the customer’s current circumstances to check that they are receiving the correct entitlement to welfare benefits and tax credits. We are also happy to advise solicitors and deputies of their customer’s entitlement to welfare benefits and tax credits. The fee for this service is £150 (plus VAT).
For this fee, we:
- have an initial, lengthy telephone discussion with you to obtain an overview of your circumstances,
- provide advice verbally, including a ‘better off calculation’ where applicable (e.g. comparing whether a family member would be better off if they stopped working and claimed benefits as a carer),
- send a letter confirming the advice, which can be retained for future reference, copying this to the introducing solicitor, then
- keep the file open for a week in case you or your solicitor have any further queries, having read the letter.
If you then need further help, for example with a benefit claim or appeal, there is a fee of £125 per hour for on-going casework, plus any disbursements we incur, for example by obtaining medical evidence that is specific to the benefit qualifying criteria. Throughout such cases, we will provide regular updates to the introducing solicitor.
These fees are exclusive of VAT.
Personal Injury Trust
Whether you have applied for an interim payment, are nearing the settlement of your claim, or specifically where you are in receipt of benefits, it is important to assess whether a personal injury trust should be established.
If a trust is not established you are at risk upon settlement of your claim, that the benefits you are in receipt of, either being reduced or stopping altogether. In addition, your future entitlement to benefit support may be affected as well.
We will provide a free of charge assessment as to whether a Personal Injury Trust is suitable for you. In order to assess whether a trust is suitable, we will need to ask certain questions with regards to your income and benefits received by your household and any savings or capital you already have.
Should you decide to proceed with the trust, then we can arrange to draw up the legal documents in order to establish the trust and also set up the trust bank account on your behalf.
A personal injury trust is a legal arrangement whereby trustees hold and manage a personal injury award for a beneficiary, to ensure that the beneficiary:
- retains their entitlement to means-tested benefits, and/or
- minimises their contribution towards the costs of ‘community care support’, provided by their local authority social services department.
This is because regulations state that personal injury awards held in this way are to be disregarded when assessing entitlement to these benefits and contributions towards community care costs.
Independent Financial Advice
The unsettling and daunting time following a life changing event can bring to the surface all sorts of emotions, financial planning needs and concerns; from income requirements, investment needs, taxation planning and succession planning to name just a few.
The journey we take with our customers to ensure future peace of mind is a very detailed one and we start at the very beginning to establish what our customers and their families want to achieve and what their concerns are. We do this by listening and supporting, before advising – from simple handholding through to complex financial calculations. These include cash flow planning and risk profiling.
The methodology of providing our advice is set out in four distinct areas:
- Initial meeting: Completion of fact-finding documentation, establishing income and expenditure requirements, cash reserve requirements, setting objectives and prioritising them in order of importance – establishing our customer’s tolerance to risk and capacity for loss.
- Detailed cashflow modelling to demonstrate that the drawdown of our customers’ investments meets their capital and income requirements over their suggested life expectation.
- Financial Planning advice and subsequent recommendations: This will be in line with our customer’s circumstances, experience and key objectives.
- Implementation and review.
When making specific recommendations we consider many areas, including:
- What are our customer’s short, medium and long-term financial objectives?
- What investments are suitable to meet these objectives?
- Is there an immediate need for income?
- Is there sufficient capital held as an emergency fund?
- Are any tax wrappers appropriate?
- What are the underlying charges of the investments?
Some of the Benefits for using this service are:
Access to Market Leading Specialist Advice
With 30 years of expertise in this field, we understand how very different our role and advice is from that of general IFAs who provide conventional investment management and financial planning advice.
Drop-In Surgery With Specialist to Answer Any of Your Questions
The benefit of a drop-in surgery is to know that at any given point you can have access to a range of specialist advisors that you may not normally have access to. They are available to answer any questions and put your mind at ease.
Extended Contact With Your Solicitor
Usually once a case is finished you would move on from your solicitor. However, we offer that extended contact with your solicitor to be there for support and reviewing, whilst moving forward.
Absolutely No Hidden Costs
Often other firms will provide an estimate quote for financial services, which can continue to grow with additional and hidden costs. We pride ourselves on our transparency right from the start, we explain all of the costs so there are no surprises along the way.
High Service Levels
We can help to take the stress away from you and move it into the hands of an expert. We do our best to take the worry out of having to plan and monitor your investments, allowing you to focus on the important things in life: your wellbeing.
We ensure regular reviews are conducted to monitor the short term and long-term objectives are continuing to be met by your investments. This also allows us to assess any changes or developments in circumstances you may have.
Access to Welfare Benefits Advice Hotline
With our dedicated Welfare Benefits Advice Hotline, we are only one call away. The hotline is monitored at all times to ensure an efficient and appropriate response to any questions or queries you may have.