PI Trust helps client safeguard compensation

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PI Trust helps client safeguard compensation

16th September 2012

A client who received in excess of £500,000 in a compensation settlement has appointed Fentons Solicitors to act as a professional trustee to help safeguard his award.

The man initially instructed Fentons to act on his behalf after he was seriously injured in a horrific collision, and the firm secured substantial damages to help fund his future care and treatment. In order to safeguard the compensation, he was then advised to set up a Personal Injury Trust.

“A Personal Injury Trust helps ensure that a claimant does not lose their entitlement to benefits,” explained Natasha Molloy, a trust specialist with Fentons Solicitors LLP. “Any compensation a claimant receives is taken into account when calculating entitlement to means-tested benefits - even a small award could affect their entitlement. But special rules allow a claimant to set up a Trust, which means the capital is disregarded and will not affect their benefits.”

Natasha said even if someone was not currently in receipt of benefits, setting up a trust could help prevent loss of any future benefits if their circumstances change. “In this case, the client will require care assistance in the future, and the Personal Injury Trust will help protect his compensation award from being used to fund that,” she said.

Natasha - who was appointed to act as a professional trustee for the client – explained that trustees are responsible for looking after the compensation and making decisions about payments from the trust.

“When one of our clients is in any way vulnerable, it makes sense for them to consider a Personal Injury Trust,” she said. “Some people might not ‘have a head for money’, others can be easily swayed or pressured by family into giving money away, while some – like the client in this case - could have a history of drink and drug problems,” she said.

“While a Personal Injury Trustis a way of ensuring that the claimant receives their full benefit entitlement, it can also ensure the compensation is not simply frittered away,” said Natasha.

How can Fentons Solicitors help?
Fentons has a specialist department experienced in advising and setting up Personal Injury Trusts for clients who have received compensation.

If you would like further information about trusts, please contact Natasha Molloy on 0845 026 4749 or e-mail natasha.molloy@fentons.co.uk