Financial and estate planning is about being proactive and taking deliberate actions now to protect your finances and to make provisions for unexpected life events. You have worked hard your entire life to provide for your loved ones as best you can. So, would not it be reassuring if you could do the same for them should you pass away?
Your Easy Guide to Financial and Estate Planning
When last did you look carefully at your financial plan? Did you follow the advice of your advisor? In fact, was an estate calculation completed for you at the time? Obviously, circumstances change from time-to-time however, here are a few easily overlooked guidelines to assists you in reviewing and enhancing your financial plan.
Your financial plan and estate calculations should include the following elements:
- Death bed and funeral expenses – these are any expenses that your estate incurs from any treatments, care or other necessities before you pass away and the expenses that your loved ones will incur when preparing for your funeral.
- Conveyancing fees – These are the attorneys’ costs for the transfer of fixed property into the name of the beneficiary. These fees are determined on a sliding scale based on the value of the property.
- Executor fees – these are the fees that the executor of the estate charge for administering the estate. Executor fees can be up to 3.5% including VAT on the gross value of the estate.
- Masters’ fees – These are fees which are levied by the Master’s office for their services when a deceased estate is administered. These fees only apply to estates with a gross value of R250 000 or more, with a minimum fee of R600 and a maximum fee of R3000 (I read articles saying R 7000 maximum), depending on the value of the estate.
- Capital gains tax calculations – Capital gains tax is a fee you pay on the profits made from selling certain types of assets.
- Accrual calculation if married under the Accrual system – in the event that the first spouse passes away, accrual is calculated by subtracting the value of the smaller estate from the larger one. The difference is then spilt between the 2 estates.
- Section 4Q deduction (if applicable) – An estate duty deduction which is allowable on assets which are inherited by a surviving spouse. Therefore no estate duty will be payable on bequests to a surviving spouse, including life insurance policy proceeds.
- Estate Duty payable after allowing for the R3.5 million abatement – The estate duty payable is 20% levied on estates with a net value of more than R3.5 million, but less than R30 million, thereafter it is levied at 25%.
Please note carefully there could be other issues involved such as outside business interest you may have as well as suretyships you may have signed on behalf of your company or other third parties.
No financial plan is complete without a properly drawn and legal Last Will and Testament. This document does not need to be complicated. Should you have minor children, guardians need to be appointed. If you already have appointed guardians, have you made them aware of the important role they will play in looking after and nurturing your children should the situation arise? It is up to you to put their mind at ease by making them aware that sufficient funds will be available to ensure your children’s ongoing wellbeing.
Whoever draws up your Will needs to inform you what costs will be incurred at the time of your death. There will be Executor fees and other costs that may be involved especially if a Testamentary Trust needs to be established in favour of your minor children.
Should any of the above issues be of concern, our team of experts at IWCP will be able to assist you.