PDA

View Full Version : Copyright and wills in the UK



Bolero
06-10-2014, 05:21 PM
Happen to be in the process of revising wills at the present.

Saw a link in a different thread to Neil Gaiman's blog and from that this document - http://files.neilgaiman.com/SIMPLEWILL.pdf

Could anyone on here advise as to

a) If copyright is listed jointly does the survivor has full control? (I've noticed that Terry Pratchett includes his wife in the copyright, so presumably yes...)

b) Neil Gaimann's document has things about trustees in it - and my brain went "who?" as in who on earth would I choose for that..... So what are the alternatives?

c) Well anything else.

Not that I've got anything published (yet :) ) but given what wills cost to have done I'd rather get this right just in case. I will ask the solicitor too, of course, but not sure how often copyright comes up and whether they'd have to spend time (and my money) researching it. So rather get my head around what options there are from a group of people who include folks who've probably already done it.

Hope that is OK asking this and asking it here.

Terie
06-11-2014, 01:37 PM
IANAL, and you really do need to take advice from your actual solicitor, but since I recently wrote my current will: My solicitor told me to put my IP (intellectual property) assignments in the attached letter rather than in the will, since there's no charge to replace the letter.

Let me repeat, though, that you really need to get legal advice from a solicitor and not from random people on the internet. :)

Bufty
06-11-2014, 02:11 PM
Terie's advice is sound. Check your own situation with your solicitor.

And as far as Trustees are concerned that's the name given to anyone administering a Trust of whatever nature and Trusts can arise out of an Executry estate but it's not something you should be contemplating without guidance and advice from your solicitor.

I've administered Estates in the UK with intellectual property that was not specifically mentioned in the Will and that property becomes just another asset, treated as Residue and dealt with as such according to the Will (unless the contract dictates otherwise).

Bolero
06-12-2014, 01:52 AM
From what you have both said, it sounds like it is less unusual that I was expecting and the bog standard general solicitor should already know about it. That's good thank you.
Having had the solicitor say "well my charges for a straightforward will are...." I'm waiting to hear back as to what he thinks straightforward is. :)


What is IANAL by the way?

waylander
06-12-2014, 01:49 PM
I Am Not A Lawyer

Did my will recently and I nominated a literary executor separate from my estate executor.

Bufty
06-12-2014, 02:01 PM
In Will terms, what is appropriate or suitable for one person is not automatically appropriate for another.

Finchlark
06-12-2014, 02:10 PM
Interesting discussion. Just had a look at my agent contract to see if that situation is covered and it isn't. I would have assumed as Bufty said IP becomes part of the estate.

Bufty
06-12-2014, 02:22 PM
It is an asset like any other asset and the solicitor will advise on the best way to deal with it upon death. In many cases no special arrangements need to be made at all.

How it is dealt with depends entirely upon individual circumstances.



Interesting discussion. Just had a look at my agent contract to see if that situation is covered and it isn't. I would have assumed as Bufty said IP becomes part of the estate.

Momento Mori
06-18-2014, 01:48 AM
Late to the party as I see the OP is already speaking to a solicitor, but I wanted to pick up on this:


Neil Gaimann's document has things about trustees in it - and my brain went "who?" as in who on earth would I choose for that..... So what are the alternatives?

If (a) you have books that earn a decent chunk of cash and/or (b) a lot of work out there in diverse forms (including short stories), then from both a tax planning point of view and a management point of view it can be worthwhile looking into setting up a trust. Typically, you'd look to appoint a number of trustees and it's good to get some advice and to talk to the people you'd like to serve as trustee to make sure they're happy to do so. In general, I would imagine that your trustees would be a close family member, an agent and/or editor and usually (but not always) a lawyer or accountant. There are costs associated with setting up a trust and it should be done by a qualified solicitor with experience of this kind of property because they'll be able to explain it to you and run through all the things you need to consider. Depending on how complicated the trust and your IP estate is, there can be costs associated with running the trust that need to be factored into the likely earnings from it.

I realise that's too late for the OP but hopefully it may help other Brits out there.

MM