Wealth Matters: Joint holdings will help your husband

I saw this question asked in the Sunday Times & I thought I would Blog about it & give you my thoughts on the response.

I have shares, bonds, Isas and cancer. Is there anything I can do now to make my husband’s life a little bit easier when I die? I am 61, he is 69 and we are both retired.
I have £1,000 in shares, £41,000 in a bond due to mature in November and Isas worth £8,000. I have a full state pension plus a £960-a-year private pension.
My husband has a £50,000 two-year bond and Isas worth £24,000. He has a full state pension plus a £30,000-a-year private pension.
We have £16,000 in two current bank accounts in both our names.

If you are not concerned about maximising your legacy to your wider family, the simplest plan is not to have much money in your sole name.

Ensure your will is up to date and put all your holdings into one savings account in joint names with your husband. Jointly held accounts and investments revert to the survivor as you would legally be joint tenants.

Since the survivor owns the holding in his or her own right, there should be no problem dealing with banks and the like before or after the death of one of you. Your current accounts are held like this already, but you should add your husband’s name to your sole accounts.

Jason Butler at Bloomsbury Financial Planning said: “You could cash your holdings and give all the money to your husband. As long as his total taxable income remains below £35,000 (after deducting the basic personal allowance of £7,475 as his income is already above the income threshold of £24,000 for age allowance), he will not pay higher-rate tax.”

However, in giving your husband your capital now, you may be exposing him to so-called “hostile creditors”, such as the local authority if your husband eventually needs means-tested long-term care.

And if your combined estates are worth more than £650,000, inheritance tax would be payable when he dies. But this is not a problem unless you wish to leave assets to others.

The same applies if you own your home. As joint tenants, your husband automatically inherits your share.But if you become tenants in common you can dispose of your share as you like. You could create a trust to put your share beyond the reach of hostile creditors.

Source of this article (http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/business/money/investments/article803727.ecee)

There are a number of things highlighted in the answer given by William Kay (Sunday Times journalist) – all of which should be taken into consideration. This is unfortunately a very common situation for lots of people these days and obviously it’s a very stressful & worrying time for all concerned. The main reason for putting this Blog up was to really hit home our important it is to get plans in place.

In summary anyone that develops serious ill health should seek financial help. It could well be that there are important decisions that affect significantly the financial well being of their partner or even the family in the longer term.

Contact the office for a FREE no obligation appointment to discuss any of the above issues raised on 0871 271 1280 or e-mail info@reevesifa.com NOW!

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