Estate Planning Guide
No one wants to pay tax unnecessarily to the Chancellor but it’s surprising how many people end up doing it. Changes to the Inheritance Tax rules in October 2007 affect married couples and those in civil partnerships but for everyone else, the rules remain unchanged. IHT is charged at 40% on any assets above the personal tax-free limits set by HM Revenue and Customs, so it’s very important to prepare for a potential tax liability. By doing so you could be saving many thousands of pounds.
The following guide is intended to help ensure that you maximise your Estate for those you love, rather than see a disproportionate amount go to the Taxman, Local Authorities or (in our increasingly litigious society) dissipated via lawsuits or attack by hostile creditors.
With our high quality, specialist advice we can help you identify simple and effective ways of protecting your property and assets. We then work closely with you to implement these measures.
Starting at The Beginning – Your Will
When it comes to thorough Financial and Estate Planning, your Will is your starting point. You can take effective measures to minimise your IHT bill with one. But in addition to saving tax there are a range of other benefits, which make having a Will essential:
- Choice of who inherits your possessions, property and money.
- Control over the amount of tax paid on your Estate, so the people you love inherit more and less goes to the Taxman.
- Protect your children by appointing trusted Guardians. If you don’t they may be taken into the care of the Social Services, or Guardians appointed who you may not have wanted to act.
- Establish Will Trust solutions to minimise IHT.
- Peace of mind knowing that financial provision has been made for your children and Grandchildren after your death.
- Prepare for your funeral.
- Leave a legacy to a Charity or make provision for a family pet.
One of the biggest benefits of comprehensive Estate Planning is that you can ensure you don’t pay a penny more in tax than you have to. This is because your Will can be drafted to include a provision to set up Trusts that will enable you to save Inheritance Tax (IHT).
Despite IHT rule changes, there are still a number of reasons why a married couple might consider provision for this in their Wills.
Probate and Estate Administration
What is Probate?
Probate is the process required to transfer ownership of an estate – the property, assets and possessions of a deceased person. When someone dies without a Will (intestate), Probate is still legally required, although the process is known as Administration.
Each Probate case is different and the time it takes will depend on its complexity and the types of assets and any legal or tax complications. With our Probate service, you can rest assured the estate will be handled efficiently and cost effectively, with a personal case manager keeping you informed and providing you with the support you need every step of the way.
With a team of qualified Accountants, Legal Professionals and Tax experts, we will support you with Probate, whether or not we are named in the Will as an Executor and even where there is no Will.
To put it simply we remove the burden of Probate, leaving you free to handle other matters.
What Clients Say
“Thank you for your efficiency and kindness during a difficult time in my life. Having someone else to take responsibility has been an enormous help.”
“It has been a great relief to have these unfamiliar matters dealt with by professionals on our behalf, in particular having someone on the end of the phone to talk to.”
How We Can Help
We are so confident in our expertise and processes that we always quote a fixed and all-inclusive fee at the outset. No matter how complex the Probate process may become and (providing all the information given to us is complete and correct) we guarantee that our fee will remain the same.
As part of our Probate service, we will:
- Take on all the responsibilities of the Executors
- Value all the assets
- Apply to the Court for Probate
- Collect in all the assets
- Handle the sale of any properties
- Distribute all the assets
- Pay the Income & Inheritance Tax
- Produce Estate Accounts
We will visit you and the other Executors in your own home to talk through how we can help you. Once we have established the complexity of the estate, we will then quote you a fixed, fully-inclusive fee for all the work involved. This visit is free and without obligation.