Category Archive Tax Planning

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Offering solutions, not products

What do you think of when you hear the term ‘Financial Adviser’? Does it conjure up the image of someone trying to sell you as many financial services products as possible – life insurance, pensions and savings plans, to name the most common – or do you see someone who can help you achieve your goals in life?

Here at Money Advice & Planning Ltd, we believe our business is about offering solutions to help people to achieve their goals and aspirations in life.

We have heard it said many times that “a goal without a plan is just a wish” and we believe that to be very true. How many people set out on life’s journey wishing to own their dream house, pay for their kids’ education, enjoy their ideal holidays or retire and spend their time playing golf or lying by the pool at their holiday home? Sadly, for many people, the goals and aspirations that they have turn into nothing more than a pipe dream which they will never achieve.

There can be many reasons why this can happen but for many it is down to nothing more than a lack of planning. For others, they see financial products as nothing more than an expense rather than a tool that can help them achieve their goals.

The role of a Financial Adviser is not about selling financial products; it is about offering solutions to help clients achieve their goals and being there over the long-term to make sure that happens. The financial products are the tools the adviser has in their bag to get the job done.

Money Advice & Planning Ltd does what it says on the tin – it provides the advice and planning needed throughout a clients’ journey, to help them achieve their goals, and after all, your goals are our goals!

If you would like to find out about how Money Advice & Planning can help you achieve your goals, please visit us at www.mapfinances.co.uk and use the contact form. Alternatively, call Andrew Singleton on 0345 241 1808.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Links to external sites are for information only and do not constitute endorsement. Always obtain independent professional advice for your own particular situation. Money Advice & Planning Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

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Family Lawyers – how MAP can add value to you and your clients

Judge gavel, scales of justice and law books in courtFrequently, family lawyers will refer their client to an IFA once a divorce settlement has been finalised; the sooner the client is referred, the better it is for everyone involved.

There are a number of areas our advisers can assist a family lawyer with in a divorce settlement. Listed below are a few of those areas where we can work alongside the lawyer.

Gathering and assessing financial information

A financial adviser can assist in gathering all relevant financial information required, as this is a natural part of the advice process they would carry out with their own clients. Areas they would cover are:

  • Income & Expenditure – what will the impact of the divorce have?
  • Savings and Investments – are they joint and therefore need to be split?
  • Pension holdings – do they need to be split or transferred?
  • Protection cover – are they joint and therefore need replacing?
  • Mortgage – is it in joint names and need to be assessed?
  • Assets – what is their value and do they need to be split?

Cash Flow Forecasting

It is important for the client to know as soon as possible the financial impact the divorce settlement will have on them. The IFA will be able to put a forecast in place to project what this could look like. 

Dividing Assets

Who keeps the house, the pension, or other assets? The IFA – based on the financial information they have gathered – will be able to offer advice and options based on the client’s goals, priorities and objectives.

Dealing with financial products

Whatever needs to be done with pensions, protection products, savings and investments, mortgages or other assets – as part of the divorce settlement – the IFA will be able to advise on the best way to proceed and then can carry out the work which needs to be done to make the changes happen.

 

Dealing properly with a client’s financial situation as a result of a divorce is crucial as it can have a major impact on their lifestyle both now and in the future. It is vital they understand all the legal and financial options presented to them, and are able to make informed decisions as soon as possible.

If you would like to find out how Money Advice & Planning can assist with divorce settlements or any other financial issues for any clients, please visit us at www.mapfinances.co.uk and use the contact form. Alternatively, call your local MAP adviser at a time which suits you.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Links to external sites are for information only and do not constitute endorsement. Always obtain independent professional advice for your own particular situation. Money Advice & Planning Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

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Accountants, Lawyers and IFAs – A Team Approach

Business people making introductionsFinancial, legal and tax advice are areas conducted by professionals adhering to their own sets of standards and qualifications, with their own professional bodies and regulators.

These advice professions are no different to other business sectors though when it comes to facing growing pressure to retain their existing clients, and more importantly, to win new clients and discover sources which will provide those new clients.

Legislation such as the Legal Services Act (LSA) and the Retail Distribution Review (RDR) has forced the legal and financial advice professions to introduce more client centric business models and, at the same time, become more competitive. This in turn has created a growing pressure for these advice professions to diversify and expand their business propositions in order to be more competitive.

Working more closely and proactively with a professional IFA can provide a very simple but effective solution to this problem.

Given the overlap between many areas of tax, legal and financial advice, a number of firms have seen the potential for Accountants, Solicitors and Independent Financial Advisers to work together to leverage each other’s client relationships. It provides those clients with a more holistic, joined-up and value-added approach to advice, and at the same time resolves the challenges of retaining existing clients and finding a source of new clients.

If you would like to find out how Money Advice & Planning can add value to your business and your client relationships, please visit us at www.mapfinances.co.uk and use the contact form. Alternatively, call your local MAP adviser at a time which suits you.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Links to external sites are for information only and do not constitute endorsement. Always obtain independent professional advice for your own particular situation. Money Advice & Planning Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

Bymapfinancesadmin

Tax Year-End Tips

Planning can save you moneyPart of any planning is to take the relevant steps at the right time. We don’t intend to give you lots of words on each and every thing you need to look out for, although we do list them below.

The main thing is that if you don’t plan, it could cost you a lot of money. A survey done recently by a firm – Dunstan Thomas – found that those who had professional help with retirement planning were £13k better off than those who went alone. So on that basis, let us put some other planning issues to you.

  • ISAs: If you regularly save through ISAs, you are unlikely to have any Capital Gains Tax issues. After the first £11,300 of gains are counted, it is then taxed at 18% if you are liable at 20% income tax, and 28% if you are liable at 40% income tax.
  • Pensions: When affordable, always pay into a pension, but don’t exceed the annual allowance of £40k or the lifetime allowance of £1m. Under the new pension freedom rules though, when you reach the age of 55, you can take out up to 25% of your total pension fund tax-free. This could be worth a lot of money and is not to be ignored; you could use it to repay a mortgage or at least put a big dent in one, for example.
  • In Retirement: If you planned your retirement using both pensions and ISAs, you could have the best of both worlds. Admittedly you don’t get tax relief when paying into an ISA, but you don’t get taxed when withdrawing from it either. In retirement, you could take out £11,500 a year from your pension fund, and you could take £13,500 from your ISA. This would leave you with £25,000 income per year with no tax to pay. Now that’s planning!
  • Married Couple’s Allowance: If you plan things between spouses, you can utilise everyone’s tax-free allowance and so could withdraw £11,500 x2 = £23,000, meaning you would only need to take out £2,000 per year from ISAs to have the same income as in the above scenario.
  • Marriage: The marriage allowance is worth £200 a year; as a well-known actor said, “Not a lot of people know that”.

The bottom line is that you need to plan things out – failing to plan is planning to fail after all. Planning can save you money or make you money; failure to plan on the other hand can cost you money. So do even a small bit of planning as every little bit helps.

If you would like some advice on planning, then why not contact Money Advice & Planning. Visit us at www.mapfinances.co.uk and use the contact form. Alternatively, call your local MAP adviser at a time which suits you.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Links to external sites are for information only and do not constitute endorsement. Always obtain independent professional advice for your own particular situation. Money Advice & Planning Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

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Why getting the right advice is so important

Speak to a financial adviser who can help youEstablishing a relationship with an Independent Financial Adviser (IFA) you can trust to handle all of your financial needs is critical to achieving your financial goals. Not all Financial Advisers are the same, so you must beware!

The two main types of financial adviser are those who are independent and those who are not. All advisers must tell you what services they offer from the outset. To be called an Independent Financial Adviser, they must be able to offer a broad range of retail investment products, and give consumers unbiased advice based on a comprehensive analysis of the market.

Restricted or tied advisers on the other hand can only recommend certain types of investment products or products from a limited number of providers (possibly only one if tied). It is important to establish at the outset what type of advice an adviser can offer, to ensure you get the best investment(s) to suit your needs and requirements.

All advisers must be properly qualified to give financial advice and hold the Diploma in Financial Planning, or an equivalent qualification. Advisers must also prove that their knowledge is up-to -date through continual professional development (CPD).

Some types of advice require an adviser to have specialist qualifications – pension transfers and equity release for example. Any companies offering these services should have advisers within their ranks who are suitably qualified to provide advice in these areas.

Advisers must also be transparent in the fees they charge for both initial and ongoing advice and services.

As a valued client of Money Advice & Planning Ltd you can rest assured in the services we offer:

  • Non-restricted advice and planning – no matter what financial advice and products you need, we can help.
  • Face-to-face advice from UK-wide trusted advisers – irrespective of where you are in the UK, one of our advisers will be happy to meet you and discuss matters face-to-face.
  • Fees structured to suit requirements – financial advice should never take on a ‘one size fits all’ approach and our fees will be structured and mutually agreed to suit your needs.
  • Tailored service packages – we don’t believe in one-off financial advice and have several service packages available, so your financial affairs are reviewed throughout your journey with MAP.
  • Whole of market non-discretionary investments – our bespoke investment strategy will cater for your needs and requirements, and give you an investment right for you.
  • Quarterly investment reviews – our proactive analysis of fund performance ensures you are always invested in the best areas to suit your attitudes to risk.
  • Recommended funds – we invest using recommended fund lists, which have been tried and tested to deliver successful returns for our clients.
  • Transparency and peace of mind – clients have 24/7 access to their investments through the MAP portal, so they always know how their investment is performing.

Perhaps most importantly of all, we come tried and tested. Read the reviews of just one of our advisers and see for yourself.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Links to external sites are for information only and do not constitute endorsement. Always obtain independent professional advice for your own particular situation. Money Advice & Planning Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

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Splitting Pensions in Divorce

Splitting Pensions due to DivorceWhen spouses separate and then divorce, there will be a need to split up pensions if one party’s pension is significantly better than the other. Usually, that is the case since most couples do not follow the general plan of splitting pensions 50/50.

Admittedly, there is very little that can be done when you are talking about Defined Benefit (DB) schemes, because people need to work to the rules of their schemes; there is no alternative. Defined Contribution (DC) schemes though are very different.

What we try and do for all of our clients (where possible) is ensure their pension planning is as even as possible. This kind of planning maximises the use of personal tax allowances in retirement, and it can also keep any tax liability at 20% instead of somebody wandering into 40%.

Splitting DB schemes can be a bit of a nightmare, as you need to get a definitive valuation as at the date of separation. This is not always easy, and it may be necessary to involve an actuary who understands the scheme rules and also how any valuation could be worked out. Valuers will need to use some assumptions along the way.

Splitting DC schemes though is much easier – all you need to do is get a valuation of the assets concerned as at the appropriate date, and that’s it.

It’s down to the solicitors acting on behalf of the spouses to decide who gets what. They can only work with correct figures however, and that’s where IFAs can come in, with their understanding of scheme rules and assumptions, plus compliance aspects. Accountants dealing with such clients will then need to take such splits into account when planning out future strategies for their clients, but IFAs can also help in this respect.

When we do pension planning for clients, we much prefer to use what is called our Pensions Guesstimate, which lets an individual see projected future pension income, thus allowing them to plan accordingly.

Notes:

  • The State pension is £8,110 at age 65, and what we are showing here is annual accruals up to 65.
  • If someone has a DWP forecast, we would put that forecast into the Guesstimate too.
  • Maximum Tax-Free Cash is taken out after separation, as client aged over 55.
  • The average growth figures we work to are 3% for low-risk investors, 5% for middle-risk investors and 7% for high-risk investors.

For any enquiries or just an initial chat, contact Andrew Singleton on 0345 241 1808 or e-mail us at enquiries@mapfinances.co.uk.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Links to external sites are for information only and do not constitute endorsement. Always obtain independent professional advice for your own particular situation. Money Advice & Planning Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

Bymapfinancesadmin

Tax Planning

Dealing with taxThroughout your financial journey, whatever your stage in life, there will almost inevitably be some tax implications connected to your personal financial activities. Since no-one likes paying taxes, why not let MAP help you to avoid them as much as possible.

Our tax planning strategies, when done properly, are quite simple. There is no ingenious formula(e) for success; it is instead all about awareness of legislation, how it affects different people and how it can be legally avoided through planning.

The three taxes you could be liable to pay in your lifetime are:

  • Income Tax – On your profits or income;
  • Capital Gains Tax (CGT) – On the sale of an asset; or
  • Inheritance Tax (IHT) – On an estate upon death.

MAP can provide effective planning to minimise your tax liability.

MAP has taxation specialists who know all about the intricacies of taxation and how it affects people’s affairs. This means they are in an excellent position to provide tax planning advice for clients; be they individuals, families, partnerships or firms.

At MAP, we will work with you to create an effective plan based on your current and likely future financial position, minimising your tax liability as much as possible along the way.

We also have a sister firm – Accounts Advice & Planning Ltd (AAP) – who work exclusively in accountancy and taxation. They can assist further with tax planning as well as undertake day-to-day accountancy work and support, plus complete HMRC submissions on your behalf.


For more information, click on the most suitable link:

Income Tax
Capital Gains Tax
Inheritance Tax
Our Investment Process
Accounts Advice & Planning Ltd

The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate tax advice

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Client Login

MAP will always work hard to give you a first class service, for as long as you need it. Here are some of the benefits of investing through MAP:

  •  Your money is invested in areas to match your attitude to risk;
  •  Independent and bespoke advice tailored to meet your specific needs;
  •  All funds invested in are tried and tested, with successful track records;
  •  Investments are looked after by a dedicated adviser;
  •  Investments are reviewed regularly to maximise returns;
  •  Ongoing service is provided to complement the initial advice given; and
  •  100% transparency lets you check performance and charges at any time.

If you have a MAP investment with an online facility, you can log-in to it securely, at any time, by clicking on the appropriate provider logo below:

Ascentric logo Prudential logo Transact logo

Do you not know your login details? No problem – just contact us and we will arrange for them to be sent out to you as soon as possible.

If you are looking to invest, or have money invested and would like to find out more, feel free to contact MAP today. One of our advisers can talk through the options open to you and review your existing portfolio and requirements before recommending the best investment(s) to suit your needs.


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Our Services

Our services and why they can helpIrrespective of what you need to speak to a financial adviser about, MAP will be able to find the best solution(s) to meet your needs. We are fully independent meaning we can advise you on any of the following, taking into consideration your attitude to risk and all options available in the marketplace:

Any and all of these solutions can be provided to you through sound financial planning. By this, we mean structuring a personal financial plan after getting to know you and understanding your goals.

Furthermore, we will stay with you throughout your financial journey, for as long as you need us. Our regular review service will ensure your finances stay on track and continue to reflect what you need, want and expect.

Whatever advice you need for your financial journey, talk to MAP.

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Your Goals

Getting your finances right can help you achieve your goalsOur client’s goals are what drive us to do our utmost for them. Your financial goals will become our targets.

We understand that for any and all aspects of your finances, a number of factors are important. Good advice at both the outset and on an ongoing basis, careful planning and successful investing will help you and indeed your money reach your financial goals.

Our approach has been tailored over many years of looking after client’s wealth, and has been structured to suit their needs and service requirements. We do the total opposite of a ‘one size fits all’ approach.

The values we bring as a financial adviser to any client are:

  • Quality – differentiating ourselves from competitors by delivering quality in everything we do;
  • Ownership – dealing with clients finances as if they were our own;
  • Expectation – exceeding client expectations by going above and beyond what was hoped for;
  • Trust – building trust with clients which lasts a lifetime; and
  • Transparency – being open, honest and clear in everything we do.

Our clients choose their financial destination and we MAP out the journey for them.