Trusts and Property
Not everybody’s circumstances are straightforward, so it stands to reason that not everyone will require a ‘simple’ will.
We now live in a modern society where we need to make the right provisions for second or subsequent marriages, step families and unmarried cohabiting couples who do not have use of the spousal exemption for inheritance tax. So, how do you cater for these circumstances? Usually, with the use of a trust in your will. There are many types of trust available and Wendy will advise you on the most appropriate one for your circumstances, if required.
Trusts can be useful for, but not limited to, the following common scenarios:
- Providing the surviving spouse with a life interest while protecting the capital for children of a previous relationship
- Where current family circumstances could make it difficult for an equal split of assets between children
- Where you do not wish to, or can’t, treat your beneficiaries equally
- You want trustees to make the decision of how best to distribute your estate at the time of death depending on circumstances that arise at that time
- A beneficiary is going through, or may soon, divorce and you wish to protect any inheritance they may receive as best as possible
- A beneficiary is in receipt of means tested benefits and may lose them if you leave an outright gift to them in your will
- Protecting assets for children or other relatives on the death of the first spouse so that they cannot be spent or gifted away by the surviving spouse
- Utilising available Nil Rate Band (tax-free) allowances that might otherwise be lost if not used between unmarried couples or married couples where one or both spouses have been previously widowed.
The use of a trust may sound complicated, however if used in the right way it can help protect and retain some control over the inheritance you leave behind.
Please contact Wendy to discuss your circumstances and for a quotation.
The way in which you own property will have an effect on what property can be gifted by the terms of your will, or not – as the case may be. When including trust work in your will it is usual to review how you own property, especially with others, to make sure the trust will work. If your circumstances require a severance of joint tenancy then Wendy can sever your joint tenancy and update the title at the land registry for you.