Annika Bell is an associate in the private client team.

Annika advises on a wide breadth of private client work including:

  • Wills: Advising UK and non-domiciled clients on estate planning and preparing inheritance tax efficient wills involving simple absolute gifts, will trusts or specific provisions covering guardianship, international succession issues, gifts to charity and provision for pets.
  • Estate Administration: Acting on behalf of personal representatives to administer estates, including intestate or complex estates, cross border matters or business assets.
  • Powers of Attorney: Helping clients put in place Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs), registration of LPAs or Enduring Powers of Attorney and deeds of revocation. Advising on the role of attorneys.
  • Lifetime gift advice and inheritance tax planning.
  • Post death estate planning and deeds of variation.
  • Court of Protection: Acting on behalf of clients on deputyship applications.
  • Trusts: Advising trustees on and administering will trusts including registering the trust with HMRC, investing assets with investment managers, liaising with the accountant to report income and gains, preparing the investment policy and trustee minutes.

Annika will provide comprehensive advice relevant to your personal circumstances and will work with you to prepare the documents required to meet your needs and carry out your wishes.

Annika qualified as a solicitor in 2015 and joined Russell-Cooke in 2020 from a major Surrey-based law firm.

Annika’s recent experience includes:

  • Foreign assets and potential claims: Drafting wills for a couple involving assets in other jurisdictions circa £5m. Advising on a potential claim under the I(PFD)A 1975 and options to reduce the risk and help protect the estate.
  • Tax efficient wills for spouses: Due to uneven balance of ownership of assets incorporated a nil rate band trust to provide flexibility on first death to pass assets to the next generation and claim the residence nil rate band. Also giving option to claim valuable joint ownership discount on property on second death.
  • Cross border estate and business relief: Administering a contested intestate estate including Spanish assets and complex business interests holding various and unusual land and property. Worked with surveyors to pull together information and report in inheritance tax account to claim business relief on circa £2m worth of assets.
  • Disabled Persons Trusts: Advising a family on the options available to protect a relative’s estate for a vulnerable adult child and putting in place a DPT under a deed of variation to the will which allowed a claim of the residence nil rate band and protected assets to secure the child’s future care needs in a tax efficient way.
  • High value estate with lifetime gifting: Administering a high value estate involving historic family trusts, heritage assets and extensive lifetime gifting. Comprehensive review of lifetime gifts to calculate effect on inheritance tax allowances and tax due.
  • Post death variations: Advising executors and trustees on options for distributing business assets from a will trust to pass shares to the next generation to utilise inheritance tax exemptions and assist with business succession and the surviving spouse’s inheritance tax planning.
  • Full member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (TEP)
  • Associate member of Solicitors for the Elderly
  • Member of the Law Society
  • Dementia Friend
  • Studied Law at the University of East Anglia and completed the Legal Practice Course at the College of Law, Guildford.
  • Completed the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners Diploma in the Administration of Trusts and Estates.