Sadly, we all die. Some leave their financial affairs in an organised state, but most don’t and some are in an atrocious condition.
This causes awful troubles and stresses for their nearest and dearest and if the wrong sort of professional executor is engaged, it can cost an arm and a leg to resolve what may be simple things which aren’t worth much either. You may wish to review their charging terms too where, as well as time-related fees, an extra percentage fee on property value is added on top!
I am sure you have read plenty of advice in this publication on many occasions and the underlying message is always ‘don’t leave it too late’. Ensure your will is in order and up to date. Keep anything related to your estate, pension pots or savings and investment in one easily accessible place, ie a folder, and ensure your loved ones know where that is.
We are seeing a growing number of enquiries about deceased people’s share holdings. They can be odd certificates which the beneficiaries or executors want to sell, but what a minefield that can be! Yes, we can sell shares, but the person issuing the instructions has to make sure the certificate is valid, that they have all of them and that the right reregistration (if necessary) is done already.
Otherwise, if you issue an instruction when the paperwork is not correct, the market demands delivery and if you can’t do that, it will buy-back your faulty disposal and charge you the earth for the privilege!
If certificates are missing, indemnities can also cost a fortune.
As financial advisers, with clients and new enquirers, we are thorough and note that you’d be best tidying up random holdings, not only to make your life easier, but to avoid the sorts of problems which can arise on death. (Too many advisers only want to deal with the chunky things which pay them lots in fees).
Our clients’ families only need to tell us of a death and that’s it – all the holdings are with an independent, secure nominee and we are there to help with the processes – and sale is easy.
We’d like to think that is always our approach – that our clients are an extended family and we do our best to ensure every aspect of their financial investment with us is looked after and dealt with smoothly and sensitively.