Equity release can be a viable option for homeowners who want to access cash in later life. From helping loved ones, to easing their own financial pressures, to making home improvements or having a financial cushion for life’s unforeseen expenses. You could have the ability to access cash as and when the need arises and the interest will only accrue on the amounts taken and will be fixed for each tranche.
Since 2014 it has been a mandatory requirement for a solicitor to have a least one face-to-face meeting with clients during the equity release process. The face-to-face meeting is to ensure that several factors are checked before proceeding with the equity release.
During a face-to-face meeting we would ensure that:
- our client’s identity has been fully established;
- our client has mental capacity to enter into an equity release contract;
- our client is not under duress or coercion to enter into the contract; and
- where there is more than one party, that both agree to enter into the contract.
During these unprecedented times of social distancing due to Covid19, the Equity Release Council have had to find a way for solicitors to overcome the fact that a face-to-face meeting is not possible.
The Equity Release Council has published a temporary modification to the rules and confirmed that a new process can be followed which will enable us to advise our clients without a face-to-face meeting. The temporary revision can only be used while the Government has directed the public to stay at home to contain the spread of Covid19.
Property wealth plays an increasingly important role in later life planning. The government have introduced the above measures to maintain access to equity release legal advice for older clients. This services ensures equity release is chosen for the right reasons, together we carefully consider the process and both the short and long term financial needs of our clients.
The temporary modification to the rules will enable WBW Solicitors to continue fulfilling our key duties to clients who are considering the option of equity release.
We at WBW Solicitors ensure that the legal advice given during the process is exemplary and to finalise the equity release during the modified requirements means that further steps need to be carried out.
The modifications are a great example of an industry working together to swiftly adapt to the current climate so that continued support can be given to our clients.
Once restrictions on movement have been lifted, the aim is to return to the full face-to-face legal process with immediate effect. These are unprecedented times and WBW Solicitors are pleased to offer independent legal advice to clients when considering releasing equity from their homes.
WBW Solicitors remains open for business and have been working hard to ensure any impact on our services to clients is as minimal as possible.