STEP - Advanced Certificate

STEP Advanced Certificate in Administration of Trusts (England and Wales)

STEP Advanced Certificate in Administration of Trusts (England and Wales)
Credits Awarding Body STEP
Credits Awarded 30
Credits Awarded Level Diploma-Level

This course aims to provide practitioners with the technical knowledge and practical skills required to deliver advice in England and Wales relating to administering trusts.

Course purpose

The course enables you to improve your technical knowledge of the issues arising in trust and estate practice, enhancing your ability to give holistic advice to your clients as a trusted advisor. It increases your understanding of the administration of trusts and estates and enables you to give practical advice on the law and procedures involved.

You will be able to

  • Describe the classification and types of trusts, their uses, what affects their validity, their premature cessation and under what circumstances they can and cannot be altered.
  • Advise on the taxation of each trust type.
  • Explain, advise and comment on the use of the trust in modern tax planning.
  • Understand and interpret the legal complexities and language pertinent to trust deeds.
  • Describe the roles, responsibilities, limitations and liabilities of trustees.
  • Advise on the legal formalities involved in the preparation of a valid will and be alert to the pitfalls.
  • Analyse the content and validity of an existing will, assess its value to a client and advise to what extent it will meet their objectives.
  • Advise on the tax-effective will.
  • Advise on the tax implications and legal considerations of making lifetime gifts and gifts made in contemplation of death.
  • Describe the roles, responsibilities, limitations and liabilities of the executor.
  • Advise on the legal management of the client estate, including probate and intestacy issues, evaluation of any risks involved, deeds of variation, disclaimers and insolvency.
  • Advise on taxation issues relating to the transference of private client wealth, specifically inheritance tax and capital gains tax, and how the burden of taxation can be minimised.
  • Construct and interpret trust and client estate accounts.

Course audience

Students of this course typically include:

  • Legal and trust professionals
  • Support staff and paralegals
  • Accountants and banking professionals
  • Charity specialists
  • Tax advisors
  • Independent financial advisors
  • Executorship administrators


  • Ideal for practitioners looking for professional accreditation, moving into or already working within the trusts and estates profession.
  • A recognised ‘gold-standard’ professional qualification for those working in the industry, globally recognised by employers, regulators, clients and professionals.
  • This course is also subject to the rigorous quality assurance procedures of Alliance Manchester Business School (Alliance MBS), a school of the University of Manchester.
  • Ability to grow your own professional network, meeting students from a range of professions providing an opportunity for networking, building relationships and sharing study tips/support as a cohort.
  • Students have the opportunity to submit academic queries to a dedicated programme content team.
  • Blended delivery, including structured workshops designed and taught by experienced practitioners and tutors and access to an online learning platform.
  • Successful completion of the course will award students with 30 Diploma-Level credits towards STEP membership.

Format, Delivery and Assessment

This course is available for study twice annually, with intakes beginning in January and July (and assessments taking place in May and November). The programme is delivered through a combination of online learning and three online workshops and will take four months to complete. We recommend that you spend four to six hours per week on private study for the four months prior to the examination.

Enrolment onto this course will include the following:

  • a bespoke hard copy course manual
  • access to an online learning platform that contains:
    • tailor-made webinars
    • eLearning modules
    • self-assessment material
    • distance learning support
  • attendance at two days of tuition
  • examination fees.

The course is assessed by way of a three-hour closed-book written examination which comprises six 20-mark questions, from which candidates must answer five. The questions will be drawn from across the syllabus and candidates must achieve 50% in order to pass the Advanced Certificate. 

Once you have successfully completed this course, you will gain 30 Diploma-Level credits towards STEP membership and be awarded the STEP Advanced Certificate in Administration of Trusts (England and Wales).

Course Schedules

Course Timetable - May 2021

Please note all courses throughout 2021 are being delivered fully online. Please visit ‘2021 Delivery’ for further information.

Please note that we will register you for your preferred Workshop dates where able, though as each session reaches capacity we will continue to enrol students for the additional dates available.

Fees and Booking



Course Start Date Book Course
July 2021 950.00 950.00

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Awarded By



Online Only


4 Months

Entry Criteria

60 Entry-Level Credits

Note: Applicants must have obtained 60 STEP Entry-Level credits to enrol onto this course or be a member of STEP. Visit STEP's Qualifications and Membership Framework to understand how to apply.




Anthony Miller

Anthony Miller has over 40 years’ experience in the field of probate and the administration of estates and trusts. Anthony is qualified with the Institute of Financial Services, having received the Trustee Diploma, and has been a Full Member of STEP since 1994.

Ian Bond

Ian is a TEP, specialising in private client work including wills and wealth planning; the creation and administration of trusts and estates; and the preparation of lasting powers of attorney and other Court of Protection work. 

Iris Wuenschmann-Lyall

Iris is a solicitor with extensive private client experience in trusts and estates. She advises on all trust and estate tax and capital tax matters, whether onshore or offshore, from the simple to the highly complex with a particular emphasis on assisting high net-worth individuals.

Julie Bell

Julie is a solicitor specialising in private client work. She is Head of Private Client at BBS Law in Manchester, advising on all areas of private client with particular emphasis on trusts and assisting high net-worth individuals.

Leon Pickering

Leon is a barrister at Ten Old Square in London. His practice has a particular focus on onshore and offshore trust and traditional chancery disputes, and the Court of Protection. Leon also advises on capital tax and succession planning.

Mark Vickers

Mark trained and qualified as a chartered accountant with Deloitte Haskins & Sells. After qualifying, Mark became a lecturer at Caer Rhun Hall, North Wales, specialising in financial accounting, taxation, executorship and trust accounting.

Megan Saksida

Megan qualified as an ICAEW Chartered Accountant in 1993 and started lecturing almost immediately; firstly in the training department in the firm she was with and then externally. She is also qualified as a Chartered Tax Accountant (CIOT) and a trust and estate practitioner (STEP).

Rebecca Roscoe

Rebecca qualified as a solicitor in 2003 and completed the STEP Diploma in 2008. After 11 years in practice, culminating in partnership at Cottrills then Slater Heelis LLP, Rebecca founded her own practice, RJR Legal Ltd, specialising in wills and estate planning, with a particular focus on long term family estate planning. Rebecca is a tutor for the STEP Certificate and Diploma in Trusts and Estates.

Scott Clayton

Scott is a qualified accountant with over 30 years’ experience in the fiduciary services industry. He has been extensively involved in the creation, management and termination of trusts, charities and private client affairs and has a wealth of tax planning experience. 

Stephen Howe

Stephen has over 14 years’ experience advising on all aspects of personal tax, trusts, wills and estate planning.

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