Estate and Inheritance Tax Planning
Estate Planning is often associated with inheritance tax mitigation. Whilst tax considerations are important, Estate Planning goes beyond this and is intended to preserve, protect and pass on assets and family wealth in an appropriate manner. This involves assets passing to the correct people at the correct time. Asset protection and control of assets are also important considerations.
We can advise families on strategies to protect their wealth through several generations. We consult with clients in order to understand their circumstances, expectations and relationships with their family members. Estate Planning, therefore, is necessarily a bespoke service and can never be uniform. It should be a continuing service and not regarded as a once and for all event.
The basic principles of estate planning are set out below:
- To gain an understanding of a client’s objectives;
- To consider what gifts in lifetime may be possible, now or in the future. Assessing surplus of wealth over required expenditure and a client’s attitude towards succession;
- Deciding what are the most appropriate assets that can be transferred. For example, assets with potential for future capital growth may be best in the hands of the next generation (or in trusts for descendants);
- Deliberation of the various tax implications of lifetime transfers. The impact of capital gains tax, inheritance tax and income tax on the donor and the recipient will need to be considered;
- Retaining some flexibility for future planning, or changes to circumstances must always be considered. Changes in fortunes and family relationships cannot always be predicted; therefore retaining some control of assets is desirable for many clients;
- Review of the Estate Plan is sensible, to determine changes to the clients intentions, family structure, expectations for the future and amend the plan accordingly.
Inheritance Tax Mitigation
Inheritance tax is most commonly associated with the estates of individuals at the time of their death.
This is the area where individual clients require most assistance but quite often are wary of asking for it. No one likes thinking ahead to what will happen to their families but it is necessary to do so in order to ensure that they will be protected for the future.
We can advise on the best means of minimising liabilities; look at protecting assets and work with clients to help meet their objections for themselves, their families and future generations.
We aim to work with you to form a strategy to ensure the tax man does not take what would be your children or grandchildren’s inheritances.
If you would like to discuss your options and find out how to protect your assets and estates for future generations, get in touch.