Your trusted partner helping you plan to give you peace of mind that your loved ones will be looked after and protected once you are gone and ensuring the least tax possible is paid.

Estate or inheritance tax (IHT) planning is the process taken during your life of protecting your wealth after you have gone and ensuring you retain control over how your assets are distributed, whilst minimising any inheritance tax bill.

An estate is a legal term for simply, everything you own. This comprises your entire net worth, including all your assets, the value of any shares you own, any business in your name, your pension, your personal possessions, cash, debts, and your insurance policies.

The main stages of personal estate planning are:

  • Making a will reflecting your wishes, telling your executor their role, and making sure your family knows that a will exists
  • Consider setting up a lasting power of attorney should you become incapacitated in the future
  • Write an ‘estate plan’ which lists all the assets and debts in your estate, including property, savings, physical possessions and any life insurance policy or trusts in your name
  • Plan what cash gifts you want to make, and record any gifts you have made in the last seven years
  • Consider what you want to happen with your funeral and how the funeral expenses will be paid
  • Keep your plan up to date

Estate planning can save a huge amount of tax. Inheritance Tax is basically charged at 40% on anything above your nil rate band – so the potential tax savings can far outweigh the cost of advice.

Taking action early means more of your money going to your beneficiaries and less to the taxman. There are many ways to manage, reduce or eliminate an Inheritance Tax bill, including (and not restricted to):

  • Making gifts
  • Using other assets to provide a retirement income and passing on your pension
  • Taking out a life insurance policy to cover the tax bill
  • Using tax-efficient investments to benefit from Business Relief
  • Use a Trust
  • Large charitable bequests

Pensions are not included in the inheritance tax calculation. Therefore, if you have enough money and resources to not use your pension for your retirement, you can pass your pension on tax-free, meaning no inheritance tax will be due on these savings.

If you put money or property into a trust, according to the law, it no longer belongs to you, so you may not have to pay inheritance tax on it. You can use trusts, for example, to provide income for your children or to preserve the family home for your spouse.

Creating a long-term care plan to provide for your future need is another consideration in your estate planning. 

If you inherit assets, if you do not need the inheritance funds, you can set up a legal deed of variation so the inheritance value passes to someone else. This can prevent you from facing a large inheritance tax bill.

Writing and planning a Will is an important part of personal estate planning, follow this link

Should I get estate planning advice?
Whether estates planning advice is important depends on how complex your estate is. However, we can help you explore options and review your financial situation, to decide what is best for your estate.

To find out more and for a free no obligation consultation, contact Jan on 07890 239442 or email him on