Why would I need a Personal Injury Trust?
Your eligibility for certain assessed government benefits can be affected as a result of a legal claim for compensation or on receipt of an insurance policy payout for personal injury. These state benefits could include:
- Income support
- Jobseekers allowance
- Employment support allowance
- Housing benefit
A general rule is that if the total amount of personal injury compensation received exceeds £6,000 then your benefits will be affected. If the personal injury compensation amount is over £16,000 then you are at risk of losing your benefits entirely.
As your compensation is often to help cover lost earnings or to aid adaptation to your new circumstances and injuries, it is important that your ability to receive benefits is also protected. To help safeguard you and your future, it is possible to place your compensation money in a Personal Injury Trust.
Personal Injury Trusts keep your compensation safe, whilst allowing you to remain entitled to your means-tested state benefits.
How do Personal Injury Trusts work?
A Personal Injury Trust is an arrangement through which Trustees “hold” a personal injury award for you so that you retain your benefit entitlement. Trustees are chosen by you to look after your assets and act in your best interests. They are often a partner or a parent but can be a solicitor.
Trustees hold your assets for you, and you can call for them whenever you wish. They are responsible for managing the money on your behalf by ensuring the money is invested and distributed according to the rules of the Trust.
There is no minimum number of Trustees but we recommend you choose at least two. We do not recommend that you are a Trustee of your own Trust. However you will have power to remove and appoint new Trustees and to end the Trust at any time you feel is necessary.
How can Boyes Turner help?
Our Personal Injury Trust specialists provide services including:
- Advising on the formalities of setting up a Trust
- Drafting all Trust documentation
- Setting up a Trust bank account
- Arranging for an independent financial advisor to liaise with you and your Trustees
- Preparing the investment policy statement
- Completing tax returns
- Preparing annual Trust accounts
Boyes Turner is here to help, not only with the creation of the Trust but to advise and support you throughout the ongoing process.