Inheritance tax: the “most important document” in your estate plan – reducing liability IHT | Personal finance | Finance

Many people don’t think about writing a will until later in life, but those with children and grandchildren should do so as soon as possible because it could save them thousands of dollars, an expert has suggested.

Express.co.uk spoke exclusively to Jeannie Boyle, Certified Financial Planner at EQ Investors, about the importance of having a will.

A will or testament is a legal document that expresses a person’s wishes as to how their property should be distributed after death and who should manage the property until its final distribution.

Ms Boyle urged Britons to ‘do it now’.

She said: “A will is the most important document to have in your estate plan. Having a will is particularly important if you live together but are not married or in a PACS.

“Transmissions between married couples and civil partners are generally not subject to inheritance tax (IHT), so if the first deceased partner leaves all of his estate to the other, no tax will be due.”

If someone dies without a will, they could lose thousands in IHT, which could otherwise be avoided.

In complex or blended family situations, having a will can make it easier to move money around after death to avoid it going to distant family members or the taxman.

Inheritance tax receipts from April 2022 to August 2022 amount to £2.9billion. This is 0.3 billion pounds more than the same period last year.

As property prices continue to rise, thousands more areas are caught in the IHT bracket.

Ms Boyle continued: ‘Remember that these rules do not recognize unmarried partners.

“If you are not married or in a civil partnership, your partner will not receive anything from your estate (which is not jointly owned by them) unless specified in your will.

“If you have children, your partner may not get all of your assets and the division of assets may take some time to be decided.”

“A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document that allows you to appoint someone to make decisions about your well-being, money or property, now or in the future, while you are alive.

“With advances in medical science, more of us are living longer, but often in poor health.

“As a result, it is becoming increasingly common for one or more of us to need some form of care, so spending time now can help take that uncertainty away.

“To avoid this uncertainty and allow greater control over who looks after your future financial affairs and well-being, we have the option of an Enduring Power of Attorney (LPA).”

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