Estate Planning is a complex issue. Sometimes individuals/couples want to have the flexibility to enable tax-effective and private inheritances outside normal Will and legal estate procedures. WLM is able to assist with some very meaningful Estate Planning for clients by using Insurance/Investment/Imputation Bonds (Bonds) as tools for specific purposes.
- Simplifying Complex Wills and Estates
The qualities of a Bond Nomination being outside the deceased’s legal estate, and thus being able to be made in secret, and being beyond potential estate challenges, give rise to a number of potential strategies which can be used in conjunction with a person’s Will or indeed as an alternative Estate Planning arrangement. Some examples include, making financial provision for the children of previous marriages or perhaps a new spouses children, addressing potential conflicts and inequities between children and grandchildren that might be difficult to handle under a Will, or privately meeting moral obligations to an employee/or friend.
- Bond Nominations
Bonds can be set up with multiple nominated beneficiaries who receive the investment benefits if a death maturity occurs prior to the bond’s selected investment term (1 to 99 years) NB- the investment term can be changed at any time. This enables WLM to assist clients to undertake some meaningful Estate Planning, if required, by appointing multiple beneficiaries with set / or variable entitlements structured to vest either jointly OR under estate survivorship arrangements. There is also flexibility to nominate legal entities as beneficiaries, such as companies and / or incorporated associations e.g. philanthropic bequests to a charity, church, hospital etc.
- Multiple / and Additional Lives Insured
By using the multiple lives insured feature the investment benefits of the bond can be structured to continue after the bond owner’s death in the hands of a trustee, executor, or estate administrator. Consequently, the bond’s investment ultimate maturity can be matched to specific intended financial planning objective. There is also a special feature allowing an additional life (or lives) insured to be added during the course of the bond. This is possible because life insurance ‘investment’ business does not require the bond owner to have an ‘insurable interest’ in the life insured.
- ChildBuilder Bond
This feature, from a provider such as Austock, (an Estate Planning Gem) enables an Imputation Bond to automatically vest (without personal taxation or CGT consequences) in a nominated child when he or she reaches a set vesting age of between 10 and 25 years. Vesting could be structured to occur after e.g. a grandparent’s death, and until that time the grandparent retains full ownership and control of the bond. In comparison, if this type of financial provision for children was settled under a trust (such as a Testamentary Trust) it would be difficult, inflexible and costly to unwind.
- Philanthropic Bequests
Some Bonds have a unique nomination mechanism which allows philanthropic bequests to charities, churches, hospitals, schools etc. This can enable a nomination to be made discretely and / or to put the bequest beyond challenge of estate beneficiaries. Charitable bequests can be very easy targets of disgruntled or distant relative claims under contested Wills.
Source: Austock Life