Protecting the financial future of the ones you love – estate and inheritance planning that gives you financial control.
At MoneyTools we can make sure your money ends up with the people you want, for the reasons you choose.
Estate or inheritance (IHT) planning isn’t just about passing on money after you have gone – it’s also about enjoying life now and ensuring you have enough to live on. This is why it’s so important to start planning as early as possible. We can show you how much money you will need, help you to pass on assets in the most effective way ensuring you retain control over how your assets are distributed, and work with you to reduce or manage an Inheritance Tax bill.
Your inheritance and estate plan should include everything of value to you, your home, car and jewellery, as well as your savings and investments and most importantly your family.
Estate planning covers:
- Managing your tax obligations
- Putting a comprehensive will in place that reflects your wishes
- Creating a long-term care plan to provide for your future needs
- Safeguarding the financial stability of your loved ones
- Inheritance can be an extremely complex and emotive area, but advanced planning and independent financial advice can help you leave a legacy for future generations.
What do I need to know about Inheritance Tax?
When someone dies and leaves an estate behind, any tax paid on the value of it is called Inheritance Tax. The rules around it are quite complex though, and it can be tricky to know what to do for the best. In this guide, we’ll explain what it all means and things you can do to help your nearest and dearest avoid paying any Inheritance Tax (legally, of course) when you’re no longer here.
What things is Inheritance Tax paid on?
Any money in a deceased person’s bank accounts, their pension fund and investments, along with physical possessions, like houses, jewellery, furniture and cars are all classed as someone’s estate, and will possibly be liable for Inheritance Tax.
You also need to include any life insurance or other lump sum benefits paid out at the person’s death. However, charity contributions and any debts, both unsecured and secured, don’t need to be included. If an asset was owned jointly (like a house, for example) or by lots of different people, you can divide the value by the relevant number.
What is the Inheritance Tax rate?
Currently, it’s 40% on anything above £325,000 (tax is only paid on any part of an estate above this amount). If an estate is worth less than that, there’s no tax to pay. A rate of 36% is also payable in some circumstances if 10% or more of the net value (follow the steps mentioned earlier to find this number) of an estate is left to charity.
Are there any exemptions?
Yes. Anything you ‘gift’ to a spouse or partner while you’re alive is exempt. These include money, property or a physical gift. If you sell something for less than it’s worth to someone, the amount of the difference between the loss and the actual value also counts as a gift.
Gifts of up to £3,000 can be given away every year as Christmas or birthday presents, for example, and won’t be counted towards an estate. Wedding or civil ceremony gifts of up to £1,000 per person or £2,500 for a grandchild or great-grandchild, and £5,000 for a child are also exempt.
Bigger ticket items
If you gift a large item to someone, they’ll need to own it for seven years before you die to avoid paying Inheritance Tax. The amount reduces on a sliding scale before that, which you can see below.
|Years gift held for before death||Tax payable|
Homes can be passed on to spouses and civil partners without Inheritance Tax having to be paid. If you want to leave it to any children or grandchildren, the threshold increases to £475,000. This is also the case if your estate is valued at less than £2million.
Other rules around homes
- If you give your home away to someone other than a spouse or civil partner and live for seven years after that, there’ll be zero Inheritance Tax to pay
- To keep living in the property, you must pay rent to the new owners, pay your share of the bills and remain there for seven years
- If you give away a part of your home or the new owners live there with you, you don’t need to pay rent
Just remember the allowances and seven-year period when thinking about property and gifts to people. It’s also worth noting that HMRC have to be told about the value of any estate, even if it’s below £325,000.
Tax treatment varies according to individual circumstance and is subject to change.
Please note that the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) does not regulate estate planning.
Inheritance tax planning (IHT)
Without proper financial planning, the reality is that HM Revenue and Customs could become the largest beneficiary of your estate following your death.
Inheritance tax is payable if your estate exceeds the nil-rate threshold, which will be fixed at £325,000 until 2021. As of 6 April 2017, each person now gets an additional £100,000 (rising to £175,000 by 2020/21) tax free allowance to use against the value of their home if it is passed to a direct descendant.
Wills, trusts & powers of attorney
Wills, trusts and lasting powers of attorney (LPAs) are the foundation of all inheritance and estate planning as they allow you to effectively plan your financial legacy.
In addition to ensuring that your estate is passed to your chosen beneficiaries in accordance with your wishes, advanced planning can ensure that the people you nominate are able to act in your best interests, both financially and medically, should it ever be required.
Did you know that if you have assets of more than £23,250 (in England and Northern Ireland), £30,000 (Wales) and £26,250 (Scotland) you would not be entitled to financial assistance from your local authority towards your care fees?
Latest figures reveal that the average weekly cost of a room in a residential home in the UK is £621, and a room in a nursing home cost £876.*
As we continue to live longer lives, the cost of long-term care is something we should all be thinking about. Professional financial advice can help you make provisions for your care costs in later life.
It’s all about you
Before you talk to us…
… take time to think about your future and whats important to you and your family, think about what you might need in terms of future income, larger amounts you may require and most importantly what you may want to do to make you and those close to you happy.
We all need a passion and to feel we have a purpose, have you thought what yours is? Its generally whats important to us and what makes us feel happy and fulfilled. We see our role as your financial planners and advisors to help you achieve it.
In the meantime, please have a look round our site and have a good read of anything you like the sound of.
The value of pensions and investments and the income they produce can fall as well as rise. You may get back less than you invested.
Ready to get in touch?
Get in touch with our Independent Financial Advisers today
Here’s how it works…
- Initial Consultation at no expense to you. We will offer as much advice as we can.
- You’ll receive a quote normally provided at the meeting for your consideration.
- We can either come to you to help us get a better understanding of your situation at first hand or if you prefer to visit us to see our set up, that’s fine. You choose.
- The meeting is completely without obligation.
If you already have an Financial adviser or Planner, the changeover is very simple and we take care of it all for you.