Will and estate planning is not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
My parents have worked hard their whole lives and are still working. They have built up enough wealth to feel reasonably comfortable financially. By comfortable I mean that they own their house outright and have built up a reasonable pension. To summarise, they are typical 60 something’s who have worked hard their whole lives, they want to protect their estate and leave a financial legacy for their loved ones.
I meet people of a similar age in the similar circumstances every day, and like my parents they are concerned about the same estate planning issues.
Here are some simple tips for folks in similar circumstances:
1/ If your estate is valued over £23,250 you will pay in full for your own care home fees out of your own estate.
Find out if your home is owned under a joint tenancy arrangement. If owned under a joint tenancy arrangement, as 99% of people’s houses are in the UK, it will be included in your estate calculation by the local authority should you need to go into care.
2/ Do you have a valid will?
Having a will that is not performing the function it is supposed to is not the same as having a will that does! If you do not have a valid will your estate on death will be subject to the rules of intestacy .. at best. If you have dependants and you die without a valid will you risk having your children sent into the care of a stranger. Is this worth the cost of a will?
3/ Are you happy to pay Inheritance tax, once, twice, thrice .. going going gone .. zero.
At the time of writing this Inheritance tax on estates valued above the Nil Rate Band will be taxed at 40%, this will happen to your family’s estate every generation, unless Trusts are used to protect Assets.
4/ Giving a gift absolutely to your children means that the gift is subject to numerous risks, including, i/ marriage after death, ii/ children’s divorce, iii/ care costs, iv/ creditors or bankruptcy, v/ further or generational IHT.
Through simple use of either trusts it is possible to protect your estate against all of these risks.
Estate planning does not have to be complicated and shouldn’t be expensive, especially when you appreciate and understand the amount of money you are protecting by using these solutions.
Trust planning has been used effectively in England since the 11th century.