Chair of Advisory Board
Philip is a STEP qualified Estate Planner.
Philip’s journey into will writing and estate planning began over 20 years ago, and since then, he has worked with thousands of clients to give them the ability and peace of mind of preparing their Will, Lasting Powers of Attorney, Trusts and helping with Probate.
Philip recognises that his clients are looking for security for their family and loved ones when they are no longer around. He understands a dedicated professional is of paramount importance, hence his goal is to make this process as painless as possible, making this journey clear and easy for them and their family.
Not only does Philip have a large network of his own clients he also assists his friends and contacts in the wealth management sector to ensure their clients also have the correct planning in place.
Office Phone: 0161 258 8461
Mobile: 0787 6408347
Vice Chair of Advisory Board
LL.B (Hons) TEP
Charlotte is the Legal Director for Countrywide Tax & Trust Corporation Ltd and holds a key responsibility in overseeing the running of the Processing and Admin Teams as well as ensuring that the day-to-day operations run smoothly across the company.
Charlotte became a full TEP in 2017 following completion of the STEP Diploma in Advising Vulnerable Clients, and she now regularly speaks at industry events and attends meetings with key stakeholders in the legal sector such as the Law Commission.
Charlotte is a member of the Industry Working Group (IWG) on Electronic Execution of Documents established by the Ministry of Justice, a 3 year appointment looking at increasing confidence and reliance on the electronic execution of documents across law and industry.In December 2019 she was appointed a Trustee for Age UK Coventry & Warwickshire to help shape and guide the future development and strategy of the charity, and from April 2021 she was appointed as the Vice-Chair of the Board.
Charlotte is passionate about encouraging others to follow careers in Private Client, Legal Tech and Legal Project Management and always willing to take part in events at local high schools and universities to help the lawyers of the future understand what this means. She recently took part in a panel at Coventry University’s first ‘Legal Futures’ Conference.
- Legal Director at Countrywide Tax & Trust Corporation Ltd
- Member of the Government Working Group on Electronic Execution of Documents
- Vice-Chair of Age UK Coventry & Warwickshire
- Member of the Chancery Bar and Family Law Bar Associations
Advisory Board Member
Hardeep Gill is the Trust Administration Technical Manager at Legacy Wills & Estate Planning Limited, Leicester. Hardeep graduated from The University of Derby with honours in Business Studies and is CeMAP qualified. Now studying towards her CILEX Level 6 qualification, with 2 modules completed to date with distinctions.
Hardeep has been with Legacy Wills & Estate Planning Limited for 16 years and throughout this time has worked in several departments. Over the last 5 years, she has gained specialist knowledge and experience in trusts and conveyancing as the manager of the trust administration department. Her role now includes project management and acting as liaison for several of the company’s trusted business partners.
Telephone: 0345 2600 600
Advisory Board Member
Chris is the Business & Relationship Development Manager for ZEDRA Group, where he works with estate planning and financial professionals. Using his award-winning solutions in the field, he provides first-class service to clients whilst assisting with their bereavement and intergenerational wealth strategies.
Chris recognises the pain that many of his clients go through when losing a loved one. He knows the pressures and responsibilities that follow: reading the will, dividing and controlling assets, and sorting legal affairs. Throughout this process, Chris is passionate about compassion and is a staunch believer that it is an integral part of the estate planning industry.
It is essential to lay a foundation of trust with the client from their first appointment to receiving assets. This means they are more comfortable and the process runs significantly smoother. Consequently, Chris’ empathetic personality enables him to deliver the best service to his clients during difficult and emotional times.
Chris’ wide range of experience within the industry means he fully understands the complexities of estate planning administrations. In addition, his efficient and disciplined time management has been invaluable, especially when managing accounts – he once managed an extensive partner network of over 200 partners.
With his experience as a national account manager, Chris has worked with many will writing and estate planning companies. His in-depth knowledge of the structure of these firms complements his business development acumen. In addition, he provides sales training, offering new and innovative strategies whilst reinforcing the importance of compliance.
He has organised and presented at many local and regional workshops and events. At these events, he shares his knowledge of wills and estate planning whilst listening to the opinion of others and offering impartial advice to their situations. He also has a keen interest in the technical and digital aspects of the industry and how it could develop further.
Chris has a natural capability for business development in the will writing and estate planning sector. He can help grow businesses whilst building high levels of rapport and developing relationships with solicitors, estate planners and financial professionals. As a valued advisory board member, he will be able to provide solutions and guidance to those unsure of how to approach this area of business.
Advisory Board Member
Jonathan is Director of Partnerships with CTT Group and has a wealth of knowledge managing lawyers and barristers spanning over 30 years. Jonathan is widely acknowledged in the private client landscape for the delivery of professional services through transformational and change management, service excellence initiatives and innovative business solutions and models to be able to work smarter not harder.
Jonathan is passionate about supporting the next generation of lawyers and is always available to provide his support via coaching and mentoring to “tomorrow’s lawyers” and allow them an insight of what is needed to differentiate in a crowded legal services environment. Jonathan always embraces change and takes a keen interest in the route for legaltech, lawtech and AI (Artificial Intelligence) and how the online offering and digital initiatives, whilst bring challenges, is bringing significant opportunities to the legal sector.
Mobile: 07941 478463
Advisory Board Member
To say that Louise is an expert in her field is an understatement. As a commercial litigation solicitor specialising in contentious probate, there is not a circumstance or situation that Louise has not come across or dealt with.
Louise studied Law at the University of Derby. After completing her degree, she then went on to start her training contract at Bakewells, where she became an associate solicitor. Through her journey in the company, she became well versed in matters involving will contestation, trustee disputes and defending claims under the 1975 Inheritance Act. Alongside these topics, she furthered her knowledge of proprietary estoppel and executor and administrator disputes.
In addition to her profound knowledge, Louise focuses on the importance of client welfare and support when dealing with sensitive topics such as wills and probate. When times are tough, especially after the death of a loved one, tense subjects can be emotionally draining and highly stressful. She emphasises the importance of putting clients first, listening to their concerns, discussing options and resolving their worries, which results in maximum effectiveness for all involved.
As a litigator, Louise understands the value of balance. While a commercial view is essential, the client’s concerns and welfare should always be considered. Her way of thinking results in both the client and litigator having a relationship built out of trust and loyalty, thus leading to good practice.
Louise knows the darker side of the legal sector, having significant experience dealing with professional negligence with claims against solicitors, accountants and surveyors. Her all-around experience dealing with cases involving professionals alongside the public means that she has a holistic view and well-grounded insight regarding property, insolvency, and general commercial litigation.
Louise is enthusiastic about building lasting relationships with will writers and probate practitioners; this is one of the reasons why she believes the Best Foundation is vital. It will provide the community that is needed within the industry. This is especially necessary for professionals just starting their careers or self-employed individuals who work independently, as there can often be a sense of isolation.
If you are looking for an expert on estate planning and will writing, especially concerning legal practice, then Louise is your person; this is why we are excited to have her on the advisory panel.
Advisory Board Member
Karl is the Head of the Wills, Trusts & Probate Department at Norrie, Waite and Slater Solicitors in Sheffield.
He has many years’ experience in Estate Planning and Probate/Estate Administration, beginning his career at HSBC in their Probate Department in 1999. In 2002 Karl moved to a firm of Solicitors, gaining further working and technical knowledge of varied and increasingly complex estates. Here he gained experience advising clients with their Wills, Estate Planning, Trusts and Lasting Powers of Attorney and has since worked for a number of highly regarded Solicitor firms before taking up his current role.
Karl recognised that obtaining industry specific qualifications would deepen the invaluable ‘hands-on’ experience and knowledge he had gained so completed the STEP (Society of Trusts and Estate Practitioners) Advanced Certificate in Will Preparation. He then embarked on STEPs industry benchmark course and is a fully qualified member of STEP.
A key aim of Karl’s is to drive up standards across the industry so that clients and their families receive the advice, guidance and reassurance they deserve. To achieve these aims, he believes it is essential to collaborate with others in the industry and with those not directly involved who possess skills and knowledge to compliment Estate Planning (Wills, Trusts, Lasting Powers of Attorney) and Probate and Estate Administration.
Advisory Board Member
James is the director and founder of JP Estate Planning Ltd. An estate planning firm based in Milton Keynes which has won several national prestigious awards (National Paralegal Awards 2022 and the National Probate Awards 2023).
James came to the estate planning world in 2015 after a career change from being a police officer for 13 years. From the get-go, he became dedicated to building his knowledge and qualifications. Today, he enjoys being a STEP Affiliate and a Fellow of the Institute of Paralegals. He has always strived for the highest standards in the industry and was the first estate planner to hold both the STEP Will Writing Code accreditation in combination with the Trading Standards ‘Buy With Confidence’ scheme, showcasing this commitment.
James is passionate about assisting other estate planners in their industry and wants to empower them to gain the required skills and knowledge in all areas from client care to technical knowledge. A multidisciplinary approach across all complementary sectors is key to achieving this success. James is heavily involved in the legal-tech and ins-tech fields and is actively identifying the opportunities this can bring to the industry.
Advisory Board Member
Following 12 years in commodity trading markets and then over a decade in financial services at both adviser and manager levels, Patrick transitioned to the legal services industry in 2011. He joined a national probate company in a national management role, where he recognised an opportunity to establish his own will-writing business in 2014. Over time, he has expanded his reach, now overseeing the wills of thousands of clients across England & Wales which includes custody of other client/will banks.
Amongst others, Patrick collaborates with various financial advisers in various disciplines, offering a dependable pair of hands in caring for their clients. Additionally, a significant portion of his workload comes from both existing clients and referrals from their friends, family, and other contacts.
A firm believer in professionalism, fair and sensible regulation, structure, and transparency, his business uses simple language to educate and explain all options to clients throughout the service it provides. This approach is integral to the business’s foundation and aimed at building strong and lasting relationships with clients by putting them in an informed position.
Patrick holds the FPC qualification and is an Affiliate Member of STEP, as well as an Associate Member of the Society of Will Writers.
Office Phone: 0333 005 0072
Katy has always known that a career in law was her calling. This has been proven by her vast experience and dedication. Her interest in law was ignited when studying the subject as one of her A-Levels, which led her to pursue a career in the field.
Starting her career at the Criminal Prosecution Service in Leamington Spa as a Casework Support Officer, she provided vital administrative support to prosecutors. Whilst at the Criminal Prosecution Service, she gained in-depth knowledge of how court proceedings operate. Not wanting to settle in one position and limit her learning capabilities, she gained further experience as a Witness Care Officer for Victim Support Services. She helped keep victims and witnesses up to date with the cases they were involved with.
Whilst she enjoyed the work in criminal law, she realised she wanted to experience another legal practice area, which led Katy to join CTT. Starting as an Administrative Assistant 11 years ago, there is now not a part of CTT that Katy hasn’t contributed to.
Her organisation skills meant that she was perfect at being a PA to a CTT director, and her administration knowledge has been essential for the Processing department. Whilst her leadership skills were displayed when she was a team leader.
Her talent for communication meant that she could deal with difficult situations and complaints as a Client Liaison Officer. This role led her to become an expert in Client Care and led her down the route of project management in that department. As a result, she successfully managed, trained and grew the newly established Client Care team. The team has tripled in size and assists clients with entering long-term care, managing their trusts, liaising with local authorities, and managing deputyship applications.
Her extensive work in the Client Care team means that Katy’s knowledge of asset management, estate planning and trusts is exceptionally high, and she often provides advice to many of her colleagues at CTT. She has also achieved a Distinction in the STEP Anti Money Laundering Certificate.
Having three children, Katy knows the importance of a work-life balance. She understands the difficulties people face juggling work and home or trying to develop a career. She knows first-hand about needing to have the ability to multitask and prioritise; this is something she is passionate about and she aims to promote the necessity of a work-life balance.
Katy is the ultimate team player, and that is why she is perfect to be the Foundation’s Company Secretary. Her caring nature, team spirit and love of a challenge binds the advisory board together. As the main point of contact for the advisory board, Katy’s role extends to project management. With her skills in multi-tasking, prioritising and liaising with a range of people, she streamlines communication and ensures the success of all the Best Foundation’s endeavours.
Fellow and Honorary President
Trevor has over 34 years experience in the legal services profession after starting his business at 23 years old. Trevor specialises in Inheritance and Succession Planning, bringing the expertise needed to protect clients and their families.
Trevor holds his Masters Degree, (MBA) from the University of Exeter and continues to guest lecture on innovation and entrepreneurship at several universities and he sits on the Advisory Board of the University of Essex Business School and Marjon University. He has also served on the Advisory panel of the Legal Services Board.
Trevor provides consultancy services to a number of law and financial services firms. He is qualified to the worldwide gold standard for Trust and Estate Practitioners with full STEP qualifications and is seen as a legal innovator.
Trevor actively supports local causes and charities in our community, in addition to investing in and mentoring young entrepreneurs. In January 2019 Trevor introduced the 4 Day Week to Portcullis, while also increasing salaries at the same time, becoming the first company in the world to do so.
Trevor is committed to working to improve access to legal services that are innovative and completely client focused. He strives to help a younger generation of entrepreneurs and business leaders achieve their aims with sustainability and creativity at the forefront of their thinking.
- MD & Founder of Portcullis Legals and pioneer of the 4 day week
- Member of the Advisory Board of the University of Essex Business School and Marjon University
Trevor stepped down as the Chair of the Best Foundation in May 2023 after one year of service. As our Honorary President, he is still able to attend board meetings and offer guidance.
Ambassador of BEST Foundation
Corin is the head of sales at Sail Group, the UK’s No.1 Probate Property specialist. They focus on streamlining the journey for the consumer through property and probate and providing all options so that an informed choice can be made.
Corin has previously worked in the financial, legal and real estate industry and his skills include Business Planning, Management, and Business Development.
Corin studied at the University of Akron and is Level 4 DipFs qualified. Corin has been in the legal services industry for the last ten years working for an estate planning firm, a provider of regulated services and a trust corporation. Corin has a passion for networking, relationship creation, and management. He enjoys nothing more than finding out what someone does, what a business is all about and linking people together.
Corin stepped down from his role as a member of the BEST Foundation’s Advisory Board in January 2024. As an Ambassador of the BEST Foundation, he is still able to attend board meetings and offer guidance.