Inheritance tax is often thought of as a voluntary tax. Certainly, with robust and timely advice during a person's lifetime it is possible to mitigate and sometimes entirely avoid an inheritance tax liability on death. It is however vital to take advice at the appropriate time in your life to maximise the tax planning opportunities that are available. Ultimately, though, inheritance tax is a harsh reality for many families because of the value of property.
Our planning takes account of the potentially sensitive nature of inheritance tax. For example, we do not advise clients to prejudice their financial security by divesting themselves of their financial assets when they might need them to fund future income or care home fees etc.
Inheritance tax planning has to be pragmatic as it needs to balance the wishes of individuals who need to retain their financial security but at the same time minimise the proportion of their estate that will go the Government on their death.
There is a wide array of tax planning tools at our disposal including a range of tax reliefs and exemptions to mitigate inheritance tax, many of which are not well known to the uninitiated. There is also a range of investment vehicles and products that can be very powerful in allowing individuals to retain control over their financial assets but which are extremely effective in reducing potential inheritance tax liabilities.
With proper planning, the value of businesses can also be exempt from inheritance tax but there are many pitfalls for the unwary.
If reducing your estate’s future exposure to inheritance tax is a priority, then request a meeting with one of our specialist tax advisers who would be pleased to set out the options available to you in this complicated area.
Death is a traumatic time. Usually, once the funeral has taken place, attention turns to dealing with the estate of the deceased. It is still a sensitive and emotional time for all involved but until probate is obtained, the executors cannot distribute the assets of the estate. There may be dependents in financial need, so its vital that the estate is attended to promptly and probate obtained without delay
Dealing with estates involves understanding and quantifying the estate’s assets and liabilities, ensuring that the correct amount of inheritance tax is paid to HMRC and then applying for the grant of probate so that the estate assets can be distributed to the beneficiaries in accordance with the wishes of the deceased.
We are authorised to undertake probate work for non-contentious estates. We have a great deal of experience of dealing with estates, both large and small, and guiding executors through the complexities of probate law. Unlike many of our colleagues in the legal profession, our fees are calculated according to the time spent in dealing with the estate rather than as a percentage of the estate.
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"I've been looked after by Craufurd Hale (Hale & Co) and specifically Mr Sean Egan for over 15 years. In that time they have attended to my every need, both in accounting, and more recently additional financial planning.
They are reputable and efficient and also friendly in the way they do business and I would highly recommend them to anyone searching for an accountancy firm that you can trust to do everything to the letter of the law whilst doing their utmost to ensure your tax affairs operate in the most efficient way possible. Sean has more than paid for himself over the last decade".Mr J Mowlem, JPM Sport Ltd