Trusts are a useful tool for inheritance tax planning for your estate and for protecting family wealth. A trust is a legal arrangement where 'trustees' hold assets for the benefit of 'beneficiaries'.
There are many reasons why trusts are created. They may have been included in a person's Will, set up during a person's lifetime for tax planning purposes or created to protect the interests of a disabled relative or the proceeds of a personal injury claim.
Trusts can therefore be used to protect, preserve and enhance the wealth of a family or individual. In particular, a trust can:
- assist in estate planning and saving tax whether income, capital gains or Inheritance Tax
- provide a flexible way of looking after assets for those who cannot do so themselves and giving financial security for family and future generations
- protect your assets in the event of divorce or financial difficulties
- hold assets for a disabled or incapacitated individual who is unable to hold the assets themselves and/or to protect means-tested benefits
- hold assets for minor beneficiaries until it is suitable for them to take control of those assets at a more mature age
- administer pension or life insurance benefits
- ensure that your assets are distributed as you wish, before or after your death
Whatever the reason, our team of succession planning specialists can design the best solution for your circumstances.
If it is appropriate, we can discuss with you what type of trust best suits your needs and guide you through the creation of the trust. Trusts can be created during your lifetime or on death through Wills or intestacy.
We can also advise on the tax implications of setting up a trust. Once a trust is established it will need to be managed. This includes preparation of annual trust accounts, completing relevant tax returns and reviewing investment strategy for the funds involved.
We can provide you with two levels of service in respect of trusts:
- Full management of any type of trust;
As well as advising on the establishment of trusts, we can act as a professional trustee, and therefore we would deal with the preparation of annual trust accounts, administration of the trust, ensure all tax returns are dealt with and regularly review and document the investment strategy of the trust.
- Advisory service to trustees on how they should administer the trust.
We would provide the appropriate level of advice and you would be able to organise the accounts and administration as you wish.
If you would like to review the different trust options please contact us.
Our team is recognised as one of the largest and most approachable teams in Kent and we pride ourselves on our practical no-nonsense approach to what sometimes can be a very technical area of law. Our skills are also recognised by the prestigious Society of Trust & Estate Practitioners.
Please see our Succession Planning Questionnaire for guidance.
Wills and Inheritance Quality Scheme (WIQS)
We are also delighted to be an accredited member of the Law Society’s Wills and Inheritance Quality Scheme (WIQS). Being a member of WIQS demonstrates that we follow best practice procedures to meet the highest standards of technical expertise and client service in providing tailored will writing services and probate and estate administration advice to consumers. All members of our “Tax and Estate” team are WIQS accredited. Please see our client charter for the benefits of using a WIQS accredited firm.