Ensuring that children and other rightful beneficiaries will inherit the wealth you have created, regardless of what the future may hold, is important. So is making sure that the value of the family home is protected from hostile creditors or unnecessary Inheritance Tax.
But without professional guidance, much of your hard-earned money might end up in the wrong hands or be lost completely.
If you should need long-term residential or nursing care, and your assets exceed £23,250, the NHS and Community Care Act 1990 allows for your home to be used by the Local Authority to meet the costs of providing that care.
By changing the legal basis under which you own your home, this valuable asset can be preserved and passed intact to your heirs. Similar measures can also protect equities and other assets from your personal or commercial creditors and ensure that your children or other beneficiaries inherit as you had planned.
Likewise, if you have assets, including the value of the family home, worth more than £325,000, your children and other rightful beneficiaries will have to pay Inheritance Tax at 40% on the amount over this threshold.
If you should die without a well-prepared will, no tax saving is possible. What's more, your possessions would be distributed according to strict legal rules (intestacy laws), which could cause considerable difficulty for those closest to you.
For instance, if you are married (or in a civil partnership) and have children and your estate is valued at more than £250,000 your husband or wife would inherit the first £250,000, along with all personal possessions, and the rest will be split between your children.
If you there are no surviving children and the estate is worth more than £450,000, the first £450,000 goes to your husband or wife and the rest goes to any remaining parents. If there are no remaining parents, the money will go to siblings and if there are no siblings, the remainder will also go to your husband or wife.
Unmarried or divorced partners could end up with nothing at all!
If you have children under 18, it is essential that you formally appoint responsible guardians. What's more, unmarried fathers have no automatic legal right to look after their own children in the event of the mother's death!
The Law Society recommends that Enduring Powers of Attorney are drawn up when making a will. These powerful documents provide a lifeline if, through sickness or accident, you cannot handle your own financial affairs.
All of these issues can be addressed by proper planning. Whatever your marital status, if you own property and have assets, including the value of the family home, worth more than £250,000, then we recommend that you talk an independent financial adviser about Property and Inheritance. It protects your business interests, underpins your financial arrangements and, by saving your Inheritance Tax, fully safeguards your family.
It's also a very good idea to store your important documents carefully. You could even use a document storage vault to ensure all your important paperwork is kept safe and readily available.
|Lender||Initial Rate||Duration||Standard Rate||Overall Cost For Comparison||Max Loan To Value||Fee|
|2.59%||2 years||5.69%||5.4% APR||75%||£999|
|2.69%||2 years||4.99%||4.9% APR||75%||£495|
|2.94%||2 Years||5.69%||5.4% APR||75%||£199|
|2.99%||2 years||4.99%||4.9% APR||85%||£495|
|2.99%||3 years||4.99%||4.6% APR||70%||£499|
|3.0%||2 years||5.69%||5.5% APR||80%||£999|
|3.19%||5 Years||4.79%||4.2% APR||80%||£995|
|3.35%||To Jul 2014||4.95%||4.6% APR||75%||£999|
|3.5%||2 years||5.49%||5.1% APR||75%||£595|
|3.84%||2 years||3.94%||4% APR||90%||£499|