Protecting you and your finances

Gone are the days when Inheritance Tax (IHT) was the sole concern of the wealthy. IHT now has an increasingly broad reach; the impact on a relatively modest estate can be quite dramatic, and on a large estate, it could be more so.

But while many people are aware of the need for IHT planning, few do anything about addressing their potential liability.  In fact, the HMRC collected £5.4bn in IHT revenues in 2018/19 tax year alone1.

IHT is just one of the many areas to consider when protecting your family and home; others include Capital Gains Tax, illness and loss of income.

1 Source: gov.uk-HMRC tax receipts, 24 April 2019

The levels and bases of taxation, and reliefs from taxation, can change at any time and are dependent on individual circumstances.

Inheritance Tax

The first £325,000 of an individual's estate is not liable to IHT. For married couples and registered civil partners, it is currently £650,000, where the full allowance has been passed to the surviving spouse. Anything in excess of this amount is generally taxed at 40%.

The Residence Nil-Rate Band (RNRB) is £175,000 for the tax year 2020/21.  Thereafter, it will increase in line with the Consumer Price Index.

If the net value of the estate is £2 million or more (after deducting any liabilities, but before reliefs and exemptions such as Business Relief) then the RNRB will be tapered by £1 for every £2 above the threshold.

The RNRB allowance applies to those estates that are“closely inherited”and contain a“qualifying residential interest.”  This means that the individual must have owned the property and have lived in it at some point. Therefore, if you give away your home to your children (including adopted, foster or stepchildren) or grandchildren, your threshold will increase to up to £500,000 (or up to £1,000,000 for married couples and registered civil partners) for the 2020/21 tax year.

There are options that you can consider to help plan for Inheritance Tax:

  • Have your Will* written and planned correctly to save the maximum amount of tax
  • Transfer assets through the prudent use of lifetime Gifts
  • Create a tax-efficient fund to enable the beneficiaries of an estate to meet the tax liability without disturbing the family wealth.

Under current IHT legislation, pensions can play a considerable role in estate planning. Although pension death benefits are broadly exempt from IHT, if they pass to a surviving spouse or registered civil partner, they will form part of their estate. St. James's Place has solutions that allow your survivor access to your death benefits without them forming part of their estate.

It’s important to find that right advice to give your survivor access to your death benefits without them forming part of their estate.

We have a service, in conjunction with four leading law firms, which is designed to provide a wide range of differing legal services covering Inheritance Tax, matrimonial issues and general tax planning.

Have you ever tried to estimate how much Inheritance Tax (IHT) may be due on your estate? You may wish to use our IHT calculator to find out how much IHT might be due - the result may surprise you.

The value of an investment with St. James's Place will be directly linked to the performance of the funds selected and can fall as well as rise. You may get back less than you invested.

The levels and bases of taxation, and reliefs from taxation, can change at any time and are dependent on individual circumstances.  

*Will writing involves the referral to a service that is separate and distinct to those offered by St. James's Place.  Wills are not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

Gifts

Making a Gift of certain amounts of money or assets can be a valuable way of using your exemptions to lower your overall liability to Inheritance Tax.

There are various ways to use your Gift allowance, such as an annual exemption for Gifts to an individual up to £3,000 per tax year.

Using income to fund the contributions to a life policy held in Trust* may be immediately exempt if you meet certain criteria. Parents can also each give up to £5,000 to each party of a marriage/civil partnership. Additionally, a lifetime gift of capital designed to maintain a dependent is exempt under certain circumstances.

Gifts to charities, political parties or for the public benefit, such as universities, national museums, and the National Trust, are also exempt.

The levels and bases of taxation and reliefs from taxation can change at any time. The value of any tax relief depends on individual circumstances.  

*Trusts are not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

Protection Planning

Protection is fundamental; it may not be the most exciting of subjects, but it answers one of our most basic desires – to keep safe all that we hold dear.

But, how can you decide what kinds of insurance should be a priority for you?

The following list may help you put your protection needs in perspective:

  • stolen car
  • burglary
  • major illness, e.g. heart attack
  • stolen credit cards
  • fire at home
  • your family surviving without your income.

Which of the above have you not insured against?

1 in 2 people born after 1960 will be diagnosed with some form of cancer (Source: Cancer Research UK, 2019).

Use our risk reality calculator to calculate the risk of death, suffering a critical illness or being unable to work.

Providing protection cover in the various forms of life, critical illness and disability solutions should be the foundation of all personal financial planning.

Take advantage of carefully-selected providers, offering an extensive product range including:

  • life cover (including Term Assurance and Whole of Life)
  • critical illness
  • income protection
  • employee benefits
  • private medical insurance.

Later Life Planning

Thanks to better medical care and healthier lifestyles, life expectancy is on the rise.

But while this may seem like good news on the face of it, there are a number of financial implications that go with it, such as planning for long term care.

It’s vital to meet your financial needs throughout your lifetime, and long-term care planning is no exception.

The St. James's Place Later Life Planning Scheme enables you to plan for Inheritance Tax (IHT) by providing monetary gifts to your loved ones and helping to secure an income to help cover your long- term care costs.

Its key benefits help you:

  • safely make monetary gifts to loved ones during your lifetime
  • plan your exposure to IHT
  • arrange a pre-set income for life to help safeguard against potential future care costs
  • keep control of your money
  • benefit from using gifts and Trusts*

The value of an investment may fall as well as rise. You may get back less than the amount invested.

If the "income" taken exceeds the growth on the Plan, the capital will be eroded.

The levels and bases of taxation and reliefs from taxation can change at any time. The value of any tax relief depends on individual circumstances.  

*Trusts are not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

Long-term Care

Apart from the emotional cost, arranging care for yourself or a loved one can be extremely complicated.

Dealing with issues like mental capacity, eligibility for state benefits, Lasting or Enduring Powers of Attorney+ (Continuing Powers of Attorney in Scotland), the type and location of the care home and funding the care itself causes stress and worry.

And yet less than 15% of people (who do not qualify for financial support) will have sought appropriate, and regulated, financial advice before entering care.2

In 2017, there were 1.6 million people living in the UK over 85 (2.4% of population) – this figure is expected to double to 3.2 million by 2041 (4.5% of population).2

The 'single' average cost in a residential care home is around £32,344 a year, increasing to over £44,512 for those receiving nursing care, and with the average stay at about three years, the costs are substantial.2

If you need care and have to fund the fees yourself, there are many things that you will need to consider. Not only will it be important that you receive care in a home of your choosing, you'll also need to consider whether you can afford to pay the fees for as long as is needed. You may also wish to protect your wealth so that some inheritance is passed on to the next generation.

Paying for care can be an expensive and long-term commitment, so it is essential to seek financial advice from a specialist adviser as early as possible to find the right solution to suit your individual needs.

+Powers of Attorney involve the referral to a service which is separate and distinct to those offered by St. James's Place and are not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

2 Source: Laing and Buisson Report 2017/18

Estate Administration

Estate administration is the process of dealing with a person’s legal, financial and personal tax affairs after they have died.

It involves far more than obtaining a grant of probate (confirmation in Scotland) which is just one element of the process.

It’s dealing with the deceased's assets (such as property, investments, and personal possessions) and liabilities (such as outstanding debts and estate expenses) before transferring whatever is left to the beneficiaries.

Duties can also include:

  • notifying beneficiaries and dealing with their questions
  • redirecting post and cancelling or transferring utilities
  • dealing with any Income Tax liabilities
  • advising on the distribution of assets to avoid or mitigate tax liabilities
  • calculating and paying Inheritance Tax where relevant
  • dealing with specialist legal work.

While some people decide to administer the estate by themselves, this can take a significant amount of time and effort, leaving them personally liable for any mistakes made during the process.

Whether their estate is simple or complex, the issues faced with the death of a loved one are rarely straightforward.

St. James's Place has selected Kings Court Trust to assist clients with estate administration.

Kings Court Trust is one of the leading specialist estate administration service companies in the UK and, like us, they place their clients at the very heart of everything they do.

Professional Trustee Services

A Trust* is an agreement between an owner of assets and the trustee.

The trustee legally owns the assets of the Trust but are not allowed to benefit themselves - unless they are also beneficiaries.

A Trust is a legal entity that holds your assets before they are eventually released to your designated recipients (or beneficiaries). Its main value is in its ability to keep your estate out of probate after your death.

The Genus Trust Company in Jersey specialises in the provision of trustee services.  Please be aware that Genus Trust Company Limited is regulated by the Jersey Financial Services Commission.

As a trustee, the company represents the interests of the beneficiaries and ensures due regard is given to clients' wishes and guidance. In all cases, these wishes are discussed in detail and placed on record, discreetly and confidentially.

*Trusts are not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

Find an adviser

Our experienced advisers offer professional, tailored, face-to-face advice based on your current circumstances and future aspirations. Start your journey now and find a St. James's Place Partner in your local area.
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St. James's Place guarantees the suitability of the advice given by members of the St. James's Place Partnership when recommending any of the wealth management products and services available from companies in the group, more details of which are set out on the Group's website.