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Trump tax reform and inheritance planning in The American

Andrea, Head of Advanced Planning, features in the March-April 2018 edition of The American discussing Trump tax reform and how it will impact inheritance tax for Americans living in the UK. A US domiciliary resident for gift and estate tax purposes now enjoys a lifetime allowance double that of 2017 thresholds. For the full article, please click here.

Total eclipse of the sun

A little over two weeks ago the coast of Oregon paid host to a total eclipse of the sun.  It began at 9:06am local time, when the sun’s glaring disc started to develop a small but growing dimple.  By 10.19am the sun’s indomitable force was reduced to a bizarre glow, a doughnut of light in the sky punched through the middle with cosmic blackness, as a curious dusk temporarily descended on the millions that had gathered to witness the event.  Total eclipses of the moon are rare, and worth celebrating, and those that have witnessed them profess to never forgetting them.  We now understand the science behind them, but ancient cultures saw dragons of the sky devouring their sun, and tried to frighten them away with whatever weapons were to hand.  Or they represented great omens of the future, tools for fortune tellers and soothsayers alike to work their magic.

You have moved to the UK – Now what?

As an American living in the UK, almost nothing related to your financial affairs is easy. The consequences of seemingly simple decisions – such as how to pay for a new home or purchase a mutual fund – may create unnecessary tax charges and complexities. There are a number of key milestones that occur, from the time you arrive in the UK to the time you approach retirement. Many of these changes will impact the appropriate wealth management strategies for American expats. Understanding how rules will change for you over time will allow you to plan ahead and make prudent financial decisions. We begin these series of articles with some initial considerations for your first three years in the UK.

Property or pensions for retirement – a very British view?

News this week from Bloomberg announced that US retirement account balances have again hit all-time highs for the third consecutive quarter in 401(k) and IRA accounts, according to data from Fidelity Investments. Whilst this is partly due to the US equity markets continuing to hit all-time highs it also reflects  increased employee and employer contributions to these retirement accounts. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-08-03/americans-keep-crushing-it-with-their-401-k-s

Planning for Inheritance Tax as an American in the UK

Many people don’t like to think about what will happen in the event of their death. For US persons living in the UK, the subject of inheritance tax is one that can be very important due to the large differential in the nil rate inheritance tax bands available in the UK as compared to the US. A lack of understanding about how inheritance tax works can end up costing loved ones hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of dollars. However, proper planning can help minimise the amount of inheritance tax payable and help ensure that loved ones are left with an estate that will provide for their needs after death.  Proper strategies will largely depend on whether an individual is deemed to be UK domicile or non-UK domicile at the time of death.

Considerations when you are thinking about giving up your US passport

Being an American living outside of the US can be difficult, with all of the complex reporting requirements and potentially adverse tax consequences of owning foreign securities. Sometimes, the seeming hassle sparks expats to start considering giving up their US passport. Below we will discuss a few of the many financial considerations associated with expatriation.