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Advisers told to review trusts

Advisers are being recommended to review clients’ trust arrangements following last week’s proposed changes to inheritance tax.

The Chancellor announced that any unused part of a deceased person’s £300,000 nil-rate band will be transferable to their spouse of civil partner and available for use at the time of the survivor’s death.

Threesixty partner David Ingram says advisers should review client arrangements because assets already in trust will not benefit from the increased nil-rate band on the second death.

He says: “With the trust route, any capital gains will be outside the estate of the survivor on his or her death and there is certainty about who are the beneficiaries. But this route means the opportunity to benefit from the rise in the nil-rate band will be forgone.”

Skandia head of tax and financial planning Colin Jelley says it is essential that families keep accurate financial records if the nil-rate band is not used on the first death.

Jelley says: “The need for careful planning and tax administration has not gone away at all.”

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