US/UK Advice

Baker Stirling Legal Services Ltd. / Wills & Estate Planning, uS?UK Advice, Powers of Attorney, Probate Services & In-House Legal Services

Baker Stirling acts for individuals with personal and financial interests in both the US and the UK. We provide integrated advice on the complex cross-border matters facing UK individuals with assets in the US, and for US individuals with assets in the UK. Both jurisdictions have distinct legal systems and complex tax regimes. Baker Stirling has a clear understanding of the interaction between the two regimes, and recognises the need for joined-up, cost effective advice on overseas probate work, international succession, cross-border planning and immigration.

Through its Affiliation and Co-Counsel agreement with US law firm American Lawyers International PLLC, Baker Stirling is able to offer its clients the best advice on both sides of the Atlantic. American Lawyers International is a full service international law firm which represents local, national and international clientele.

The firm is headed up by James R. Lavigne, who is a distinguished international lawyer, admitted to practice in all the courts of Florida as well as the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeal in Atlanta and the United States Supreme Court. James spent many years living in London, which is where he gained his Master of Law Degree in International Law from the University of Notre Dame Law Centre. His practice is based in Florida where he is recognised as a Florida Bar Board Certified International Lawyer. Full details about James Lavigne and American Lawyers International PLLC may be found on their website here.

International Probate

When someone dies, their estate must be administered in a process known as probate. This includes managing and gathering in their property, paying inheritance tax, and distributing the estate to the beneficiaries. Our team advises on the administration of estates for UK nationals who owned assets in the US, and for US nationals who owned assets in the UK. The different laws and taxes in the UK and the US mean that this process can be complicated and time-consuming. Baker Stirling has the in-depth knowledge of estate and tax law in each jurisdiction, and a strong understanding of how these laws interact. Our team handles a great number of complex and high-value international estates, and we pride ourselves on ensuring that the estates of our clients are successfully administered as efficiently and affordably as possible, and to the satisfaction of all parties concerned.

Whether you require advice on completing probate yourself, or else would rather we take over the entire estate administration process on your behalf, Baker Stirling can tailor the service to your needs. We also provide consultancy services to US law firms and other professionals requiring specialist advice on international estate administration. Our advice ensures that assets pass to the correct beneficiaries in the most timely and tax-efficient manner achievable.

International Succession & Cross-Border Planning

Baker Stirling provides advice to ex-pats who still have assets in the UK, and to individuals living in the UK whose official home for tax purposes is in the US. We work closely with a network of firms across the US to ensure that our clients’ needs can be met, and if our clients have existing US advisors then we adapt to work alongside them as necessary.

Our areas of expertise include:

  • drafting wills and related estate planning documents for clients with exposure to both UK inheritance tax and US estate taxes
  • advising on handling international trusts and wealth management structures
  • advising US citizens or green card holders who are UK residents in relation to their tax exposure and reporting obligations

US Immigration

The US immigration process is filled with rules and regulations that are ever changing and evolving. Through our affiliation with American Lawyers International, our Co-Counsel James Lavigne helps clients navigate the immigration process and ensure compliance with current US policies. Whether you dream of immigrating to the United States, or if you want to simply work or study in the US, attorney James Lavigne will help you attain your goals and avoid any legal mistakes.