A recent report by Legal & General found that over half (51%) of Britain’s small business owners have left no instructions in their Will or made any special arrangements regarding the succession of the business – possibly leaving its future in jeopardy.


The survey of over 800 small and medium-sized businesses also found that only 26% of shareholders said that they would buy any shares left following the death of a fellow shareholder. Of those who would, over half stated that they have to fall back on their personal wealth to do so. The same report also found that just 41% of companies had a Shareholders’ Agreement, whilst 32% and 40% respectively had reviewed their Articles of Association or Partnership Agreement within the last year. Rather worryingly, one-third had not reviewed their arrangements at all since setting up their business. 


The above is an indication that many business owners do not have their affairs as well organised as they perhaps should. Ensuring your Will is up-to-date, as well as being aware of how the Articles of Association or Partnership Agreement will treat a shareholder’s interest upon their death, is crucial to ensuring that your estate is distributed in the manner you would wish. It will also allow you to take advantage of all available tax reliefs and ensure that you do not pay additional tax above and beyond that which is required.


Whether you would like us to review your personal affairs, your business affairs or if you have any questions in general, please contact our expert team here at Clyde & Co and we would be delighted to help. 

Posted by
Doran Mitchell


0131 524 2248

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Simpson & Marwick is the trading name of the Residential Property Division of Clyde & Co (Scotland) LLP, a limited liability partnership registered in Scotland under number SO305618 and with its registered office at Albany House, 58 Albany Street, Edinburgh, EH1 3QR, United Kingdom. Clyde & Co (Scotland) LLP is authorised and regulated by the Law Society of Scotland and uses the word "partner" to refer to a member of the LLP, or an employee or consultant with equivalent standing and qualifications. A list of members is available at:clydeco.com.