Inheritance: Warning as lengthy probate means Britons struggle with funeral costs | Personal Finance | Finance


Inheritance is an important matter which many people will want to consider before they pass away. In most cases, leaving a legacy, whether financial or otherwise to family members and friends will be a vital consideration for older individuals. But while some may have ideas about how an inheritance could help them in the future, there are perhaps more pressing issues to address.

One of particular importance is the cost of a funeral, a time which can already be upsetting and stressful.

Research from Tower Street Finance has shown thirty percent of individuals in the UK have admitted they would not be able to afford to give their loved one a funeral.

Part of this problem arises from the fact many are reliant upon an inheritance from their loved one who has passed away to cover the all-important costs.

One in seven of individuals asked said they would rely on an inheritance from the person who has passed away to cover funeral costs.

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Andrew Bartle, founder and managing director of inheritance specialist, Tower Street Finance, commented on the issue.

He said: “It takes an average of nine to 12 months after the individual dies for beneficiaries to receive their inheritance.

“Relying on it to pay for a funeral just isn’t feasible.

“Aside from funerals, people rely on a legacy for a wide range of things – from paying off a mortgage and university fees to simply coping with household bills.

“Having access to an inheritance sooner can therefore be a real lifeline for many.”

Mr Bartle added this is why his organisation established an Inheritance Advance product to give beneficiaries easy and quick access to their legacy with no credit risk.

With this shocking news of Britons’ inability to cover funeral costs due to inheritance woes, many may wish to take action.

It is often stated by professionals that sorting out one’s estate ahead of time can make the probate process easier, quicker, and therefore less costly.

This may involve letting beneficiaries know about a financial situation and relevant documentation ahead of time to avoid confusion.

Similarly, some individuals may wish to undertake estate planning if they want to avoid their loved ones paying a hefty Inheritance Tax bill.

There are certain gifts and exemptions Britons can make ahead of time to avoid large sums being counted within an estate.

However, it is worth noting this can be a complex and difficult process to strike the right balance with.

Consequently, some Britons may wish to enlist the services of a financial adviser to help them work out what is best in their personal circumstances.

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