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Everything have rules, so has estate planning

The most important one is to have a will that regulates your assets. Let your financial planner or bank draw up your will for you. It will make the decisions the will executor have to make easier to direct your assets to the right people.

On a very simplistic level, planners can reduce the value of their estates by sing the annual donations tax exemption of R100 000. Any amounts donated that are more than the exemption, will attract donations tax at a rate of 20%. In addition, it is important not to overlook that donations between spouses are exempt from donations tax.

Companies are sometimes used either in isolation or in conjunction with a trust. In essence, some estate plans take the form of an inter vivos trust which holds all the ordinary shares in a family company. All the planner's growth assets are sold to the company in exchange for preference shares. Through this mechanism the planner has a degree of control over the company. It is, however, important to ensure that this control is limited so that it cannot be used to benefit the planners or their estate.

Limited interests such as fiduciary or usufructuary
The bequest of a limited interest which includes a usufruct or fideicommissum can, in certain circumstances, be effective in estate planning. Estate duty advantages can be achieved by providing that on the death of the fiduciary, the property will devolve on the succeeding beneficiary for a short period. After this, full ownership of the property will pass to the ultimate beneficiary. To this extent, the interest will be valued with reference to the short period for estate purposes, leading to substantial estate duty savings.

Beneficiaries I
f you have a item that must go to specific person. Note it as such in the will. A mistake that many people make is to leave furniture to the children without specifying it. This is a huge mistake. Determine at some time while you are alive what goes where. It happens so many times that children are angry with each other because parents did not consider the value they had for items in the house.

Burial or Cremation
According to law is is required for people to mention it in their will if they would like to be cremated. If you don't mention it you can only have a burial service.

If you would like your organs to be donated, mention where it must go. Keep a copy of the arrangement you made with a organ donor organization with your testament.

Financial Advisor It is not the easiest thing to do, but keep your financial advisor up to date with your transactions. When you die he is the first one to be contacted regarding funeral cover if you have any. He will be the one handling most of your claims against insurance companies. If he's got most of the information your estate will be round up quickly.
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