Tax & Estate Planning
It's important to make sure you aren't paying more tax than you need to. Taxation can be very complicated and the rules, reliefs and allowances often change. This is where we can advise you.
Our UK tax year runs from 6 April through to 5 April. During this time everyone is required to pay an appropriate level of income tax on their earned income, which helps to pay for things like healthcare and education. As well as income tax, you can also be liable for capital gains tax on profits you make from any chargeable assets you have sold, or for tax on gifts you have made during your lifetime.
Tax Planning is not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
Tax treatment depends on the individual circumstances of each client and may be subject to change in the future.
Trust Planning helps you to manage assets for the future, so that you can plan ahead and know that taxation is being mitigated.
Since trusts usually avoid probate, your beneficiaries may access these assets quicker than they might access assets that are transferred using a will.
As a consequence of increasing property prices more people than before have found themselves being caught liable to Inheritance Tax. If your estate is over the inheritance tax allowance (currently £325,000) when you die, it will be subject to a tax, known as Inheritance Tax (IHT).
Family home allowance
From April 2017 each individual passing on property to direct dependants, will be offered a family home allowance. This is to assist them passing their home on to their children or grandchildren tax-free after their death. This will be phased in from 2017-18.
The family home allowance will be added to the existing £325,000 IHT threshold, meaning the total tax-free allowance for a surviving spouse or civil partner will be up to £1 million in 2020-21.
The allowance will be gradually withdrawn for estates worth more than £2 million.
There are a wide range of investment products which are acceptable to HM Revenue and Customs and which enable investors to reduce their potential liability to either income tax or IHT or both.
Pension scheme members can also reduce their family's liability to IHT on the value of the member's death benefits by arranging spousal bypass trusts.
Ultimately, financial planning will focus on what happens to the estate when you are no longer around, we can help by talking to you about the importance of making a will and the basics of IHT. Should you then wish to find out more about estate planning and IHT we can arrange an initial discussion.
Investments which form part of a deceased's estate are re-valued at the date of death, so if they are sold there will be no capital gains tax to pay on any profits.
An additional service which most professional advisers are able to provide is cashflow forecasting. This uses specialist technology to calculate the period of time over which a given investment portfolio might be expected to meet identified needs for income and or capital.
Capital Gains Tax
Individuals are entitled to an annual exemption. If you think that your investments have made substantial gains and you have not yet made use of your annual allowance, you should consider taking financial advice as you may be able to utilise your annual allowance, or reinvest in an ISA (subject to the ISA limits).
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Income Tax is a tax you pay on your income. You don't have to pay tax on all types of income. You pay tax on things like: money you earn from employment, most pensions, interest on savings etc.. You don't pay tax on things like: income from tax-exempt accounts, Individual Savings Accounts (ISAs) and certain state benefits such as Personal Independence Payment.
See our Tax Tables »
The Inheritance Tax threshold remains unchanged for 2018/19 at £325,000, whilst the family home allowance has increased to £125,000. This means individuals (with direct dependants) will be offered a family home allowance so they can pass their home on to their children or grandchildren tax-free after their death.
Certain lifetime gifts can be made without giving rise to an inheritance tax charge. You can give away £3,000 worth of gifts each tax year (6 April to 5 April) and it is worth considering making a gift of this amount if you are in a position to do so.
Venture Capital Trusts
These are designed to encourage individuals to invest indirectly in a range of small higher-risk trading companies whose shares and securities are not listed on a recognised stock exchange, by investing through Venture Capital Trusts. So, if you invest in a VCT, you spread the investment risk over a number of companies.
A Venture Capital Trust is only suitable for certain individuals. Please speak to a financial adviser before investing in these types of products.
Your capital may be at risk
Enterprise Investment Scheme
The Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) is designed to help smaller higher-risk trading companies to raise finance by offering a range of tax reliefs to investors who purchase new shares in those companies.
An Enterprise Investment Scheme is only suitable for certain individuals. Please speak to a financial adviser before investing in these types of products.
Your capital may be at risk
Spousal Bypass Trusts
Commonly the death benefits from a pension scheme are distributed to a surviving spouse and therefore an Inheritance Tax charge may occur on the death of the surviving spouse, when the assets are passed to the next generation. Spousal bypass trusts avoid death benefits passing directly to a spouse and so they will not form part of the spouse's estate.
The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate trusts, tax planning or will writing.
The value of investments and income from them may go down. You may not get back the original amount invested.