What is inheritance tax?
Inheritance tax is the tax that is paid on someone’s estate (including money, property and possessions) after they die. Inheritance tax is currently charged at 40% of anything over £325,000. This tax reduces the amount that any beneficiaries of the estate receive, so it’s important to work with an inheritance tax solicitor to ensure you don’t end up paying more inheritance tax than you need to.
What is estate planning?
Estate planning is the process of deciding the most tax efficient way to transfer your estate over to any beneficiaries after you die. An estate planning solicitor can help with listing both assets and debts, reviewing financial accounts, preparing a will and ensuring your estate is distributed as per your wishes.
How our solicitors help with inheritance tax and estate planning
Our inheritance tax planning solicitors are here to help you successfully plan the administration of your estate in the most tax efficient way possible, which often starts by looking at reducing the value of your estate for inheritance tax purposes and benefitting your loved ones. We can help with all of the following and more:
When you come to B P Collins for advice about how your wealth is to be protected in the event of your death or incapacity, firstly, we listen to your own wishes and expectations and then discuss with you all the options that are open to you.
It is only after we’ve agreed with you what you want to achieve with your will, power of attorney and any trusts related to these, that we will draft the documents that will protect you and your family.
This approach to wealth protection, using the resources of our dedicated estate planning team, has served our clients well and has enabled us to build a depth of experience that we can use to assess your own situation in a pragmatic and holistic way.
We will consider your situation, your family’s situation and your finances, now and in the future before providing bespoke advice to comply with your instructions. We ensure that you are aware of all the options available, their merits or drawbacks, as well as highlighting the tax position and other implications of your instructions. This will enable you to make the right decisions about how best to protect your wealth during your lifetime and after your death.
Our private client team offers families a complete family estate planning exercise, which looks not just at the immediate generation and inheritance tax, but provides advice for younger generations too.
Whether you are concerned about how best to mitigate your tax liability, have complex family circumstances, are worried about passing on wealth to young beneficiaries or beneficiaries who may get divorced, become bankrupt or are unable to cope with a large inheritance for other reasons, our estate and tax planning team will discuss with you the best structures to deal with your concerns.
We’re all living longer and for many of us that’s a good excuse to put off those “must do” things, such as making a will or planning for our retirement. Yet the truth is the sooner we start, the easier it will be, both for ourselves and the next generation.
Our private client team can provide tailored advice and guidance on the issues that matter later in life; from inheritance tax planning to the creation of trusts; from making a will to arranging powers of attorney, and even how to plan for long-term care needs.
As you gain ‘assets’ such as a property, get married or have children, you need to start planning for any eventuality. Although we don’t like to think about it, dying at an early age or becoming incapacitated through accident or illness does happen, and at such an emotional time, the last thing a family needs is the additional stress of having to go to court to access their money or fight to stay in their home because of a legal dispute.
This is especially important when, for example, individuals may have been married and divorced previously, with children from each marriage or; alternatively, where one person owns and runs a business and is the main earner as well as an employer.
Power of Attorney
We can advise on the arrangement of a power of attorney to help protect you or a loved one if the ability to take care of your personal affairs is later lost through mental or physicaincapacity. We consider these an “absolute necessity” to ensure one’s financial affairs run smoothly at a time when all other matters can be in turmoil.
Consideration should be given not only to your financial circumstances but also to those of your children and grandchildren through effective estate and tax planning.
Trusts can offer bespoke solutions for different generations. For example, an elderly couple may consider leaving their share of their house by will into trust, so that on first death at least some of the estate is ring fenced for the next generation and hopefully disregarded in any means test assessment of the survivor’s long-term care.
For the younger generation meanwhile, lifetime planning involves gifting assets into a trust for children and grandchildren so as to reduce the inheritance tax payable on death, whilst keeping those assets in an environment which offers protection for the young or vulnerable, or against a child’s later divorce or bankruptcy.
Later year planning
The legal issues which affect older people, their families and carers are complex, which is why it is important to seek early specialist legal advice which will mitigate or avoid any problems which can arise later. We can help you plan for an uncertain future by providing flexibility and protection for your later years and will provide clear and reliable advice, in an empathic and professional way.
B P Collins’ reputation continues to excel in the legal directories. The firm is recognised as a regional heavyweight, many of our services are tier one and a high number of lawyers are recognised as either leaders in their field or next generation lawyers.
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