Inheritance tax and trust review for non-UK domiciled individuals »
Despite the previous announcement of the end of this series, I
am delighted to continue sharing my trust and estate planning
thoughts with you.
Markets misbehaving nicely »
The real difficulty is not in predicting whether
markets will react or how they react, but by how much they will
react. In July last year, the population of Greece voted to reject
the bailout terms proposed by the European Commission, the
International Monetary Fund and the European Central Bank. This was
a major event since it was Greece's first referendum since 1974.
The bailout was rejected in all regions of Greece, as well as
across all Greek constituencies, giving the country's government an
exceptionally strong mandate with which to repudiate its
obligations. Bad news for the stability of the Eurozone? You would
think so, and so did the European stockmarket falling 9% between
the date of the announcement of the referendum and the vote to
reject the bailout.
Back to business »
With the Brexit Referendum a distant memory it remains to be
seen how pensions and employment legislation will be affected.
Against this background, Parliament is due to return from summer
recess on 5 September, at which point the report stage of the
Finance Bill will commence, although this will of course be
interrupted again when the party-conference season starts. Here is
an explanation of what we are expecting from the Bill.
The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) and Buy to Let Complaints »
So your firm does the occasional bit of buy to let mortgage
finance for investor landlords (BTL). BTL products are not and
never have been regulated - right?
Brexit and Investment »
Where now for the UK? The referendum asked us whether we wanted
to be 'in' or 'out', but not what kind of 'out' we wanted. This is
unfortunate, as the question is a critical one for the future of
our country. Politicians will have to infer an answer, knowing that
the question was never properly debated. Do we want the 'lite' form
of Brexit enjoyed by Norway, Switzerland and others, where nothing
much changes? Brexit-lite would minimise economic uncertainty by
maintaining existing trade arrangements with the European Union
(EU); it would probably help foreign investment into the UK to
resume and the Pound to recover much of its losses. Or do we want a
more extreme, Canadian-style arrangement where we are clearly in
control of immigration from the EU but, commercially, more
isolated? This would take longer to negotiate, maximising economic
uncertainty and prolonging weakness in the Pound.
Business succession planning »
The trust and taxation-related article in the previous issue
highlighted the key points to bear in mind in connection with
business protection trusts used in business succession
Last word on business protection trusts »
As this is my last article in this series, I have been looking
at the topics covered in the past, trying to decide which topic
seems to be the most problematic and so deserving having one final
go at. Just then I received an enquiry about a shareholder
protection arrangement which sounded distinctly odd. It was to be a
share purchase arrangement involving a limited company
effecting a policy under a business trust and a cross
option agreement. So here goes.
Brexit and Pensions »
Let's be honest. Nobody forecast the result of the referendum
with confidence and nobody has forecast the consequences with
confidence. There will undoubtedly be an impact on pensions over
the longer term (we are still members of the EU) and the markets
will probably twitch at regular intervals in the absence of
certainty as to their destination. Those twitches will be magnified
further by the sheer difficulty of trying to divine how significant
is the latest economic shock or encouragement.
Brexit - Let's not persuade ourselves into a depression »
Since the vote to leave the EU we've clearly entered a period of
uncertainty, which some may consider to be 'open-ended'.
Surviving a critical illness »
Most homebuyers purchase life assurance when they arrange a
mortgage, but only a minority obtain another form of financial
protection that they are five times more likely to need before they
BTL - no place for amateurs »
Mortgage brokers have had to adapt to a changing world and since
2008 have demonstrated their resilience in the face of a variety of
challenges, including seismic shifts in compliance and greater
demands from customers in terms of fulfilling the growing variety
of funding requirements.
Battle of the ISAs »
Providing the Lifetime ISA is implemented as we expect, then
from April 2017 first-time buyers will have a choice of the Help to
Buy ISA and Lifetime ISA.
Trust wording »
One of the key benefits of trust law is that, apart from a
couple of restrictions relating to legality and perpetuity, it is
pretty much up to the individual settlor to decide the terms of a
trust. It should go without saying that, in addition to the trust
provisions being legal, the words used should make sense.
Staying invested through the turmoil »
Markets experienced significant turmoil as they attempted to
price in the immediate impacts and longer-term risks of the
surprise Brexit vote. European and FTSE 250 shares fell sharply, as
did the Pound.
Mortgages: a route to consumers? »
On June 16, the research arm of Protection Review, known as The
Syndicate, launched its 2016 report looking at consumer and adviser
sentiment regarding protection and financial matters. The research
showed that there was very little appetite among consumers to
purchase protection products with 45% of those surveyed saying that
nothing could persuade them to buy protection and only 24% of
people saying that they were more likely than a year ago to review
their protection needs with a view to increasing the level of