Case Studies

All case studies below are based on individual circumstances. The details outlined below may not be all the factors that were considered and the advice depends on your personal circumstances and attitude to risk. Please note all case studies below should not be taken as guidance or advice.

Family Protection

Parents in 30s with a 3 year old son, expecting a second child in 2 months. Mortgage of £240,000, 18 years to go, no life cover other than Death In Service as part of company pension scheme.

Issues identified

  1. Wife will be on maternity leave for 6 month. How would they cope if husband died, seriously ill or off work long term?
  2. What would happen to the children if anything happened to the parents?


  1. Life & CI to repay mortgage if either of them die or suffer a Critical Illness, leaving and DIS benefit to provide security for the family
  2. PHI (Income Protection) to provide income if husband off work longer than company sick pay (3 months)
  3. Will to nominate executors, beneficiaries, trustees and to appoint guardians for the children.

Deferred Issues to be address later- Retirement planning and savings.

Retirement Income Planning

Married couple in their early 60s, both civil servants, approaching retirement wanting to discuss options for occupational and private pensions. Some short and medium-term savings needing investment advice also required.

Issues Identified

  1. Should they take tax free cash from occupational pension?
  2. Should they buy an annuity with their personal pensions or use new pension flexibility to take it as a lump sum(s)?
  3. Should they take income from their savings?


  1. Taking the tax free cash was the right decision for them as they had debts to pay off and wanted to have some work done on their house
  2. The occupational pension met their income needs so we deferred taking the benefits from the personal pension until April 2015 when they could take advantage of the full flexibility of the new pension rules
  3. Reviewed their existing saving and investments and recommended a few changes to their portfolio to increase the return and reduce the overall risk
  4. Regular annual review agreed to ensure income continues to meet living expenses and to monitor investment portfolio
  5. Wills updated to reflect changes in personal circumstances and legislation since last ones done.

Long Term Care fees planning

Couple with elderly parent suffering from early stage dementia. Parent will soon not be able to look after herself and live on her own. Children (existing clients) felt that they wouldn’t be able to look after her themselves.

Issues Identified

  1. Clients and mother not aware of how LTC is funded and paid for
  2. Analysis showed that mother would be self-funding due to asset levels
  3. Suitable care home likely to cost over £1,200 per month
  4. Options considered for mother’s house (may need to be sold to pay for care costs) as it was her largest asset
  5. They didn’t have LPAs in place to enable children to manage things for mum.


  1. LPAs arranged with mum’s agreement to give children authority to act on her behalf (only able to be done as mother was still quite “with it” and was able to pass mental capacity tests)
  2. Explained how care fees funding works and discussed alternatives
  3. Clients sold mum’s house and moved her into the chosen home
  4. Care Home Fees paid by combination of mum’s pension income, LTC Care Plan (impaired life annuity), savings interest and investment income + some erosion of capital
  5. Mum lived happily in the home for 2½ years before passing away. Significant assets retained in her estate to pass onto beneficiaries.

Retirement Planning

Young couple in their mid-40s, no children, both higher rate tax payers. Both have small preserved pensions from previous employers but set up their own business 4 years ago and have done nothing about planning for retirement. “The business is our pension”.

Issues Identified

  1. No succession plan for business so hard to sell as a going concern as it relies on the clients being there to run it
  2. Cash flow very variable so hard to value business
  3. No obvious purchaser or may not be worth as much as they think. Need to have a “Plan B” for retirement.


  1. Deferred pensions reviewed and left in situ as best advice
  2. Personal pension started with lump sum (tax deductible) plus small regular contribution
  3. Annual reviews agreed to monitor performance of pension and progress towards retirement objectives
  4. Annual lump sum contributions added depending on company profit
  5. Decided to recruit an assistant to train up so that he/she can help run the business and may be able to form part of their exit strategy when the time comes.

Investment Review

Married couple in retirement with a sizeable investment portfolio built up over a number of years. Had not received any advice or seen anyone in about 8 years. Wanted to have more income.

Issues Identified

  1. Clients existing portfolio no longer matched their attitude to risk
  2. Too much invested in direct equities (individual company shares)
  3. Not making full use of tax efficient investment vehicles
  4. Large potential Inheritance Tax bill on estate after second death.


  1. Assessed attitude to risk and capacity for loss to ensure any recommendations were appropriate
  2. Managed regular partial encashments of share portfolio within annual CGT allowances to crystallise gains tax free
  3. Moved funds across into ISAs annually to maximise tax efficiency of investment portfolio
  4. New investment portfolio established under trust to provide income and address IHT issue
  5. Wills re-written to increase tax efficiency and protect estate from Long Term Care fees
  6. Lasting Powers of Attorney also done.

Wills and Estate Planning

Clients in early 70s, basic wills written 30 years ago when children were still at home.

Issues Identified

  1. Wills no longer suitable for current circumstances
  2. One of the 2 executors had pre-deceased them already
  3. Wills left everything to each other on first death
  4. No LPAs


  1. Solutions Full discussion of current circumstances and intentions.
  2. New, more tax efficient Wills drafted and signed
  3. LPAs for both Property & Finance and Health & Welfare drafted, signed and registered with the Office of the Public Guardian (Court of Protection)
  4. Children appointed as executors, trustees and attorneys
  5. Estate protected against LTC acquisition by Local Authority should one of them need LTC.

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