Cornwall LivingIssue #64

Peace of mind

Have you got your health and family matters in order? Speaking to the team at Sampson Solicitors could ensure all eventualities are taken care of.

How do I plan for if I am not capable of making decisions myself?

There may come a time when you can no longer make vital decisions about your future finances and care. A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) enables you to choose to give someone you trust the power to act on your behalf in situations which you have identified. There are two different types of LPA: property and finances, and health and welfare. With a property and finances LPA, if there comes a time when you can no longer manage your finances, your attorney will do this for you. This could include paying bills, collecting benefits, or selling your house. A health and welfare LPA allows your attorney to make decisions on your behalf about your care if you are no longer able to decide yourself, including, if you wish, the power to accept or refuse life-sustaining treatment on your behalf.

How do I avoid paying care fees? 

It’s an unnerving thought that your home might be sold to pay for care home fees. After a lifetime of working hard and paying your taxes, it doesn’t seem right. It’s not surprising that firms claiming to help you protect your assets from care fees are commonplace. Here’s the catch: they often offer an expensive, flawed solution, frequently doomed to failure.

Local authorities aren’t stupid – they know why people use asset-protection schemes. If they think the motive was to avoid care fees, they have the power to launch a legal challenge. If this seems unfair, the good news is there are tried, tested, and legal ways to help you maximise what your children will receive.

How do I avoid paying inheritance tax?

You could now save a massive £140,000 in inheritance tax as a result of a recent change in law which enables you to benefit your loved ones rather than the taxman. The new rules are complex, requiring detailed legal advice if you are to take full advantage. Mistakes could be costly, and your existing will may need updating.

The rules will be phased in, and by April 2020 families could escape tax on up to £1 million of their wealth. A will that was highly tax efficient in the past may now result in you paying thousands more than is necessary, so it makes sense to review your will now.

For advice on any of the above issues and to discuss your individual circumstances, call Gemma Sampson of Sampson Solicitors.