Succession planning: how we can help

CLA Private Client and Tax Adviser Jack Burroughs highlights some of the ways the CLA can help you on issues surrounding succession planning

When looking after land, it is important to take a long-term view and plan for any changes that may be faced in the future. This is as true for the owner’s own circumstances as anything else, but frequently planning for succession is one of the last things to be considered. This is unfortunate, as delaying succession planning leads to more limited and less tax efficient options.

The CLA can provide a range of services to assist members in their succession planning. The aim of these is to make the process go as smoothly as it can, to keep down the cost to members, and help members to find a solution that works for them, their business and their family, in a tax-efficient manner.

Guidance Notes

The CLA has several guidance notes that will be helpful to those thinking about their succession planning. The recently published GN17-22 ‘Making a Will – Things you need to think about’ provides a detailed guide on this aspect of the succession planning process, from advice on finding a lawyer and what to expect from the process, to the topics you may want to consider in advance of a meeting with your lawyer, and a checklist of the things you should ensure have been dealt with by your Will.

There are also notes covering important tax issues, such as GN20-11 ‘Notes on IHT Agricultural Property Relief for farmhouses’ which explains the criteria that would need to be met for this valuable inheritance tax relief to apply.

Succession planning handbook

For a more detailed explanation, CLA94: Succession Planning can be ordered from the CLA website by CLA landowning and business/professional members. This handbook aims to provide relevant and practical guidance to faming and landowning families who are making or reviewing their plans and covers how to approach the process and the options available, as well as advice on different business structures, the tax considerations, and the various legal documents required.

Bespoke succession planning advice

Of course, one of the most valuable services available to CLA landowning and business/professional members is the bespoke advice available from CLA advisers. The Tax Team can provide advice on succession planning options and the tax issues that arise out of this. Typically, we would provide interested members with a questionnaire to gather essential information about the assets and circumstances, so as to ensure that the advice was properly focused, and then arrange a call with the member to discuss their options, provide suggestions, and answer questions. This would then be followed by a detailed written report to confirm our advice. The goal is for the member to then be able to approach their other professional advisers armed with an idea for what they want to do and an understanding of the likely tax implications.

Succession planning roadshows

To help you start your succession planning journey, come and hear the CLA tax team and our Sponsors Irwin Mitchell talk through the practical, tax and legal considerations, using illustrative case studies at one of our regional roadshows.

Key contact:

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Jack Burroughs Private Client and Tax Adviser, London