Inheritance Tax Lawyers

Inheritance Tax Lawyers

For peace of mind

Sorting out Inheritance Tax (IHT) can feel like a big, confusing task. But don't worry, our legal team is here to make it easy for you. We guide you through each part of the process so you can focus on what matters most.

At Switalskis, we're all about taking the mystery out of Inheritance Tax. Our team knows the law back to front, and we're here to help you at every turn.

We understand that sorting out taxes on your estate is a big deal. That's why we cut through the legal talk, keep you up to speed, and make sure things go smoothly.

There are various types of wills and probate matters we deal with:

To get started, give us a call us on 0800 138 0458 or get in touch via our website.

How Switalskis can help you

When you get in touch with us, the first thing we do is figure out what you want to achieve with your estate in terms of Inheritance Tax. Do you want to reduce it, spread it out or perhaps donate to charity? We'll walk you through the steps you need to take so you'll always know what you should be doing.

We're with you every step of the way, demystifying the tax laws and handling all the paperwork. We take care of the tricky legal bits, allowing you to focus on your bigger picture - your future and your family's wellbeing. We understand that every estate is different, so our advice is specially tailored to suit your unique situation.

With Switalskis, you're not just getting legal advice; you're teaming up with people who genuinely want the best for you. We'll keep you in the loop, so you're never left guessing and can make well-informed decisions.

What is Inheritance Tax?

Inheritance Tax is a form of tax that comes into play when someone dies. Simply put, it's a tax on the estate - the money, property and possessions - that a person leaves when they die. If the total value of the estate crosses a certain threshold, Inheritance Tax will likely apply.

In the UK, the threshold is usually £325,000. If your estate is worth less than this, you probably won't need to pay any Inheritance Tax. However, the rules can get more complicated if you're passing on a family home, gifting money while you're still alive, or have other specific circumstances.

There are various ways to minimise the Inheritance Tax due on an estate. This could involve giving gifts to loved ones while you're still alive, putting assets into a trust, or even donating to charity. Each of these moves can help reduce the overall value of the estate that will be subject to Inheritance Tax.

At Switalskis, we're experts at simplifying complicated processes. Our team is on hand to guide you through the maze of Inheritance Tax planning. We'll help you understand your options and make smart choices, so more of your estate ends up where you want it to - whether that's with family, friends or good causes.

How can Switalskis help me with Inheritance Tax planning?

Our friendly and skilled legal team has a wealth of experience in helping people navigate Inheritance Tax. Here are three popular strategies often used:

1. Crafting a tax-smart will

First, there's the option of writing a will that's tax efficient. When you leave money and possessions to your spouse, that's tax-free. But if you don't plan properly, your children could lose out when the second spouse passes away. You may wish to include something called a discretionary trust in your will. This is especially useful for assets like property, which might rise in value quicker than the tax-free limit. Our specialists in wills are here to help you create a tax-efficient plan that could save your family valuable assets.

2. Setting up a trust during your lifetime

Another method is to create a trust while you're still capable of doing so. By putting assets into a trust, you could ring-fence them from Inheritance Tax. However, you'll need to outlive the transfer by seven years and not retain any benefit whatsoever in the case or asset transferred for the full tax benefits. But the upside could be substantial savings that stay in the family rather than going to the taxman.

3. Giving a gift

You can give assets or money as gifts and potentially avoid Inheritance Tax. However, there are some rules you have to follow. Our team can walk you through the details. Just like with trusts, you'll need to be around for seven years after you make the gift for it to be tax-free.

What happens if I’m not a British citizen?

Believing you're exempt from UK Inheritance Tax due to non-British citizenship could be misguided. In the context of this tax, your liability is determined by your residence, not your nationality.

So, what does that mean? If you own property in the UK that you call your permanent home, you could end up owing Inheritance Tax.

Now, the rules around this can be a bit of a maze. People often get tripped up, thinking they're in the clear, only to find out they owe tax. It's a tricky area, so you don't want to go it alone and hope for the best.

That's where we come in. Our experts can dig into your unique situation and let you know whether you're likely to need to pay Inheritance Tax and what steps you can take to minimise it.

How does owning a property abroad affect my UK Inheritance Tax liability?

If you're a UK resident and you own property abroad, it's likely that this property will be counted when figuring out how much Inheritance Tax you might owe in the UK. In short, being a UK resident usually means that your worldwide assets, including foreign property, are subject to UK Inheritance Tax.

However, tax rules can differ from country to country. So you might also have to pay some form of estate or Inheritance Tax in the country where the property is located. This could be complicated, especially if the two countries' tax systems don't play well together. There are some agreements between countries to prevent double taxation, meaning you won't be taxed twice on the same property, but it's not always straightforward.

Also, who you leave the property to can make a difference. Certain countries have specific rules about who you can leave property to, which might affect how much tax is due.

It's really important to get professional advice to navigate these tricky waters. Both UK law and the law in the foreign country will need to be considered to work out the best way to handle the property in your estate.

Can I change my will to make it more tax-efficient?

You can update your will to make it more tax-efficient. This is actually a smart move to make sure that your loved ones get the most from your estate without losing a substantial to Inheritance Tax. Here's how you can make your will more tax-friendly:

Use trusts

You can write trusts into your will to hold assets like property, which could grow in value faster than the Inheritance Tax threshold. Trusts can help manage how assets are passed down and could reduce the tax payable when you're no longer around.

Spousal transfers

Assets transferred to a spouse or civil partner are generally exempt from Inheritance Tax. Make sure your will reflects this if you're married or in a civil partnership.

Charitable donations

If you leave a portion of your estate to a charity, not only is that part exempt from Inheritance Tax, but it could also lower the tax rate on the rest of your estate.

Gifts and exemptions

There are some smaller gifts you can give away that won't count towards the value of your estate for tax purposes. Consider using these allowances where possible.

Plan for your business or farm

If you own a business or agricultural property, consider business relief or agricultural property relief options that could significantly reduce the value of the business for Inheritance Tax purposes.

Consult an expert

Tax laws can be complex and they do change. An expert can guide you through the process, making sure your will is both effective and tax-efficient.

Regular updates

Your life circumstances can change - marriage, children, new assets, etc. Regularly update your will to account for these changes and their tax implications.

Updating your will can certainly make it more tax-efficient; however, we'd strongly recommend speaking to a solicitor skilled in wills and IHT planning to make sure that any changes comply with the law and truly benefit your loved ones.

Our Inheritance Tax Lawyers

Photo of Catrin Lloyd
Catrin LloydDirector and Solicitor
Sharon WoodwardAssociate Solicitor
photo of Linda Firth
Linda FirthSpecialist Wills Clerk
photo of Louise Davis
Louise DavisSpecialist Legal Clerk
photo of Fiona Haigh
Fiona HaighTrainee Solicitor
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Why Switalskis?

If you're thinking of sorting out Inheritance Tax and need straightforward, expert guidance, look no further than Switalskis.

Clarity in complexity

Inheritance Tax can be a maze. But don't fret, we're here to simplify it for you. We'll answer all your questions, put the legal jargon into plain English, and keep you updated. This way, you're always in the know and can make decisions confidently.

Empathy at every step

Sorting out Inheritance Tax is a big deal, especially when you're thinking about your family's future. We listen, understand your specific needs and give tailored advice. You're not just another case to us; you're someone planning for a significant life event, and we want to make it as hassle-free as possible.

Expertise you can trust

When it comes to the legal aspects of Inheritance Tax, you want a team that knows its stuff. That's us. With plenty of experience and a strong track record, we're here to guide you through the process smoothly.

Championing your rights

We're fully committed to getting you the best outcome while making sure your rights are well protected. From our initial conversation to finalising your tax planning, we'll keep you informed so you always know what's happening.

Find out how Switalskis can help you

Curious to know more about managing inheritance tax? Give us a call on 0800 1380 458 or get in touch through our website.

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