What is estate planning and is it relevant to me?
Estate Planning is the process of managing ‘your estate’ during your life and then the disposal of it after your death, whilst minimising all elements of taxation including Inheritance Tax (IHT) and Capital Gains Tax (CGT). Simply put, your estate is everything you own – your home, your car, bank and savings accounts, investments, life insurance, income protection etc.
Without taking the right advice and planning accordingly then HM Revenue and Customs could become the greatest beneficiary from your estate following your death. When you’ve worked hard and invested carefully to build your wealth, you want to look after it. Having a well-managed estate can save time and legal costs in the long term, help avoid a large Inheritance Tax bill, and cushion the blow for those you leave behind.
It’s important to start with a clear picture of your goals. You may want your estate to provide ongoing income and security for dependents, to make bequests or to set up Trusts. Everyone’s circumstances are different – planning can look at tax-efficiency and maintaining access to income and capital. It can also include protection from irresponsible beneficiaries, or to provide for vulnerable or minor beneficiaries. We can also help you assess and minimise any risk to your inherited assets, for example from divorce or bankruptcy.
Wealth preservation and the transfer of your wealth is not just for the super-rich. It is essential for anyone who wants to ensure that their loved ones benefit from their inheritance and are not burdened by it.