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Its all a matter of trust

October 22, 2015

Trusts are a great way to help protect your loved ones, either in your lifetime, or after you have died. Trusts can ensure your loved ones are provided for in the future. Trust funds have many uses and are set up for many reasons. The most common are:

  • To protect assets - so they cannot be used to pay for care home fees

  • To guarantee an income for loved ones - providing financial stability for their future

  • To help to avoid inheritance tax - ensuring money, shares and property are passed on in the most tax efficient way

  • To declare different interests in property – where two or more people have paid different amounts when purchasing

  • To provide for future generations – so that grandchildren and great grandchildren can benefit

  • To provide for vulnerable beneficiaries – so that their means tested benefits are not affected

As well as protecting assets such as property, money and shares, trusts can help provide for a family's future. Many people consider setting up a trust to safeguard their assets if their chosen beneficiary is either:

  • Too young to inherit - the beneficiary cannot inherit until they reach the age of 18

  • A spendthrift - If the person is not great with looking after money, any gift can be put into a trust and they can receive a gradual income from it.

For the vast majority of people their home is their main asset and they want to ensure that as much of it as possible passes to their children. Care home fees are a particular worry for many people. The current care fees regime means that should a person need to go into care, the Local Authority will assess that persons income and capital resources to determine whether they should contribute to the costs of their care. If their capital assets are more than (currently) £23,250 they have to pay the full costs of their care.

In view of this, the most popular type of trust we encounter is a Property Protection Will Trust. This trusts provides a flexible way of allowing a surviving spouse to live in a property after the death of the first spouse, whilst preserving the deceased’s share of the property from care fees so it can pass to the children of the family.

Setting up trusts can be a complicated process, but trusts do have great benefits provided that the right trust is chosen. You should always seek the help of your legal advisor in setting up a trust as are there are different tax rules which can apply, depending on which trust you opt for.

We can fully advise you about all trusts and which trust would be best for you to preserve your assets & wealth for your loved ones. We offer a fixed fee asset & wealth review for this purpose and we have lots of free information about the different types of trust that are available on our website.

 

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