Basics for Estate Planning

What is Inheritance Tax (IHT)?

As Inheritance Tax (IHT) is famously quoted as being ‘a voluntary tax payable by those, whose distrust of their heirs is slightly greater than their dislike of the Government’ there are many options to reduce the value of an estate which is ultimately calculable for tax.

The balance is to ensure the current generation (yourselves) have sufficient income, capital and financial security to make retirement both fulfilling and enjoyable, whilst also trying not to continue to accumulate wealth in excess of your needs and therefore increase the tax take.

Basic steps to follow

There are some basic steps to follow, when planning for your heirs and mitigating the potential impact of Inheritance Tax (IHT) which our qualified and professional advisers recommend. These are:

  • Make a Will – ensure you have made a Will or that your Will is up to date and reflects your current circumstances and importantly, your wishes.
  • Allowances – understand the Nil Rate tax bands, Residential Nil Rate bands, annual allowances and gift allowances and use them fully.
  • Exemptions – identify if you can use any of the many exemptions and if they can be applied to your situation without prejudicing your financial security.
  • Reliefs – do any of your assets qualify for available relief from IHT? If so, be aware of any actions that may jeopardise that relief e.g. loss of Business Property Relief through change of status from a trading asset to investment.

Our Estate Planning service helps both private and business clients and ensures that a step by step approach is developed in conjunction with your existing legal and accountancy team so a coherent, coordinated and holistic plan is devised and implemented to your timescales.

The key to exploring your options is to contact one of our experienced and qualified advisers, for an initial no obligation discussion, from which we can identify if and how we might be able to help.