Life & Events
When you die, the assets you leave behind for your loved ones could be subject to inheritance tax – this includes things such as money on the bank, your investments, your property and your businesses.
Basically, if the value if your assets exceed the limits set by the government, it will all be subject to a 40% tax and 36% if you leave 10% or more to a charity.
We have all, undoubtedly, thought about how your loved ones may cope financially if you died, but few of us have actually done anything to help protect them should this happen.
Life insurance is great if you want to help your loved one should the worse happen and knowing you have provided them with a financial safety net can provide will give you peace of mind.
You can start a policy from as little as £5 a month and it could be worth it if you have dependents that would benefit from such a payout, especially if you have income that they rely on.
Types of life insurance
There are basically two types:
- Term life insurance – It will normally pay out a set amount lump sum if you die within a fixed term – such as 5, 10, or 25 years. A lump is paid only when you die.
- Whole-of-life policy – this policy will pay out regardless of when you die, but you must keep up with your premium payments
Writing a Will
Not everyone has a will and most people do not decide on one until they have a family or suddenly find that they are seriously ill.
Most people tend to put it off for as long as they can, but no one knows what tomorrow may hold and knowing that your wishes for your family are respected when you pass away can give you great peace of mind.
How to get a will
Do it yourself?
This is the cheapest option but can be risky if you have complex affairs, such as owning a business or if you own property overseas.
But if you have a straightforward life with straightforward wishes and are confident with your knowledge on the law, you can download templates online, or even buy them from stationary stores. It is a good idea to use templates, which can cost around £10, rather than jot things down on a piece of paper and hope for the best.
You must get your DIY will signed by a witness to make it legally binding.
Going through a divorce is an emotional time, but it’s also a time when your finances need a good once over.
Divorces can have a severe impact on your finances, so it’s worth knowing all the facts and being up to speed with all aspects of your finances, including things such as pensions, savings, property and so on.
Things to think about before deciding on a divorce:
- Where will you and your children live
- What possessions are you willing to give up, and those that you are not willing to part with
- Impact on other family members
- Divorces can be expensive – how will you fund it
- Is it worth seeing a marriage counsellor first
Filing for divorce
If you wish to go ahead with a planned divorce, then you must first, complete a petition document, which can be found here and post it your local county court, which can be found here with a fee of £340 if you’re in England & Wales and £200 if you’re in Northern Ireland .
You must include a justified reason for divorce on this form.
It is good idea to agree on things in advance, such as who is going to be the petitioner and the grounds of divorce.
You can represent yourself in court or use a solicitor.
If you’re in Scotland, then applying to the courts is usually the last step before completing the divorce. You must first resolve and agree on issues regarding finances and children.
If there’s thing you can’t agree on, then you have to get a solicitor to start court action.
You must involve a solicitor to start the divorce action in court. The exchange of papers can start once the solicitor has done this.
If you have children under age 16, the courts are unlikely to grant you a divorce until they are satisfied with the arrangements made for your children.