High Net Worth
Bespoke service for estates over £2 million
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Whether you have earned your wealth, inherited it or been fortunate with the choice of investments you have made, you will want good advice to make sure you minimise your tax liabilities.
Where your estate is over £2 million we can still help by guiding you towards good solid advice with one of our business partners whose Professional Indemnity Insurance is far greater than ours and will cover any issue that could arise in the future.
At Will Planning Solutions we know our limitations and know you will get top advice, what have you got to lose by making an inquiry?
Why would you not want to protect the family wealth?
When it has literally taken a lifetime or more to create, locking it away at some point so only the right people will benefit is always going to be a challenge and can be a costly experience, but when it’s done, ‘it is done’, working and yielding what you had hoped for.
It is not a one-size solution fits all either, your plans and aspirations for your family will be the driving force behind the direction you take. Whilst money and assets remain in your own name there will be risks to its security, so be sensible about it and enlist professional help. Ask lots of questions, garner and reach the comfort level you need to with the choices you make, pay the right price once and be sure in your own mind that given the anguish, pain and time it is going to take to set up that it is going to be worth it and know your plan is going to work.
The starting point will be choosing how your assets are going to be owned, who is going to manage them and achieving an acceptable rate of growth outside of your estate; then you will begin to gain some confidence. You will no doubt be looking to solve tax issues and pay the lowest tax rates you can find. There will be a cost to managing things, and you will probably want to retain access to capital and income. You may not get to utopia with all the numbers and rules behind the plan but if it ticks the majority of the right boxes, go with it, whilst appreciating that a lot of things can change going forwards.
Generally you need to be looking at either a Trust, a business entity (like a Limited Liability Partnership or Investment Company) or a Pension Fund arrangement.
- A Trust (such as a Family Asset Protection Trust) can hold or own the assets, you can continue to benefit from them and so too will other family members according to your succession plans.
- A business entity will benefit from the protection of limited liability, it would typically own the family assets such as a property portfolio and the family can enjoy a wide range of flexible features in a low tax environment.
- Alternatively you could use a Qualified Non-UK Pension Scheme or QNUPS which the HMRC introduced in 2010, it is a regulated and tax efficient pension scheme which looks after your wealth, it does have some flexibility and tax advantages to consider.
All sound complicated? It will be, such robust plans demand professional advice to get it right first time. We do not advise in this specialist area ourselves but know where to go. Want to know more then please get in touch here.
Be smart and put a succession plan in place for your family.
Top 10 Inheritance Tax Tips
- The Annual Exemption – you can give away £3,000 each year, so a couple can give away twice this amount. If you don’t use this allowance one year, you can use it in the next year.
- Gift Assets to your Children – these are known as ‘potentially exempt transfers’ (PET’s) and provided you survive 7 years then the job is done. Who should make the gift? Will you lose control of the asset that you’ve gifted? Well, you can protect the gift in the hands of the recipient so you don’t need to lose total control of it.
- Gift part of your house to your children – after 7 years it is out of your estate for IHT. The trouble is you have to pay full market rent to your children. They in turn have to pay income tax on the rent received. If they sell it they will be liable for Capital Gains Tax (CGT) on the gain on their share, and if you get it slightly wrong the gift will fail entirely. The better solution is for one spouse to sell their half share of the house to the other spouse in exchange for an IOU, which is then gifted to the children as a 7 year PET. After 7 years, half the ‘value of the house’ is out of the estate for IHT, but the married couple still owns the entire house.
- IOU Scheme – as tip no. 3 above but it can be done with any asset, e.g. a share portfolio, second property and so on. When set up properly, the value of the asset will be taken out of the estate after 7 years.
- Deed of Variation (DoV) – say a relative dies and leaves you an inheritance that creates you an IHT liability. Use the DoV procedure to vary that Will after death and set up a Trust to receive the inheritance for the benefit of you, and your family. There are time limits but this works very well if set up correctly.
- Gift out of regular income – if you have an IHT estate and your income is higher than your expenditure, the problem will only get worse as time goes by. Gifting the excess out of regular income to your children is immediately exempt from IHT. The rules can be tricky to implement but this is a very significant exemption if used correctly.
- Business Property Relief (BPR) Scheme – if you hold investment assets in a BPR scheme for only 2 years they will be 100% exempt from IHT. You need to retain these assets until you die but you can get an income and, since you have not given these assets away, you can cash them in at any time if you need to.
- Settlor Excluded Trust – if you want to gift an asset to your children to avoid your IHT after 7 years, but the asset has gone up in value (like a house) and would trigger a CGT liability if you sell it, you could instead set up a Settlor Excluded Trust and transfer the asset to that trust. As you are the Settlor and a trustee you therefore retain control of the asset, but as you will have no benefit from it, given 7 years it will be out of your estate for IHT and you will get holdover relief for CGT as well.
- Discounted Gift Trust – can seem attractive and you can get an immediate IHT exemption for part of your initial investment. The trouble is the portion that is exempt is based on your age and health so it may not be as great as you had wished for.
- Family Protection Trusts (FPT’s) – avoid the problem in the first place. If inheriting from your parents is going to give you an IHT problem, get them to set up FPT’s because with their assets ‘in trust’ you will have the option of borrowing your inheritance from the trust in exchange for a valid IOU so that you get the full benefit of the inheritance without incurring an IHT liability.
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