Should I wind up a will trust?

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - GOODPUZZLES -

I am the sole trustee and a ben­e­fi­ciary, with my chil­dren, of my late hus­band’s will trust. The trust was set up 30 years ago to pro­tect his es­tate from es­tate duty and was then val­ued at R1.5 mil­lion. The as­sets (two mod­est prop­er­ties) are now worth much more than that, but would be sub­ject to cap­i­tal gains tax (CGT) and other costs if the as­sets were sold.

Mean­while, the trust is ex­pen­sive to ad­min­is­ter de­spite the fact that there is very lit­tle ac­tiv­ity in the trust – the prop­er­ties are rented out and rental in­come is re­ceived, ex­penses are paid out, and funds are dis­trib­uted oc­ca­sion­ally to the ben­e­fi­cia­ries to help them fi­nance their stud­ies.

I have been ad­vised that I could wind up the trust, pay the CGT and other costs now, rather than later, and then have free­dom to in­vest the as­sets any way we wish, for the ben­e­fit of the chil­dren. I can’t see South African res­i­den­tial prop­erty or rentals in­creas­ing in value greatly while our econ­omy is strug­gling. I would be grate­ful for an­other opin­ion.

Name with­held

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