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Five Key Areas of Tax Planning

This UK Tax Guide has been prepared by Harkia Tax Advisors in London to provide a comprehensive overview of key tax considerations in the London Area . The guide covers important topics such as Expatriate Tax, Inheritance Tax, Capital Gains Tax, and Succession Planning.

Read time: 4 Minutes

Prepared By: Hussain Hammad ACA, FCCA


Why Tax Planning is Important?

Tax planning is an essential aspect of financial management for individuals and businesses in the London area because it involves strategic decision-making and proactive measures to minimize tax liabilities within the boundaries of the law. Effective tax planning can help individuals and businesses optimize their finances, maximize wealth accumulation, and ensure compliance with tax regulations.


The goal of tax planning is not to evade taxes or engage in illegal activities but to make use of available allowances, exemptions, and reliefs provided by the government to reduce tax liabilities. By employing legitimate tax planning strategies, individuals and businesses can legally minimize their tax burdens and retain more of their hard-earned income or profits.

In this article, we explain the Five Key Areas of Tax Planning and the benefits of tax planning which extend beyond reducing tax liabilities. It also helps individuals and businesses achieve financial goals, such as wealth preservation, investment growth, and business expansion.


Expatriate Tax

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Capital Gains Tax

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Inheritance Tax

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Succession Planning

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I. Expatriate Tax:

A. Definition and Scope:

Expatriate tax refers to the taxation of individuals who are living and working outside their home country. It is crucial for expatriates to understand their tax obligations in the UK, including residency and domicile rules, as well as the taxation of foreign income.

B. Tax Residence and Domicile:

Understanding tax residence and domicile status is essential to determine an individual’s UK tax liability. The guide will explain the statutory residence test and the concept of domicile, which can have significant implications for tax planning.

C. Taxation of Foreign Income:

Expatriates may have income and assets located overseas. This section will outline the rules for taxing foreign income, including employment income, rental income, and investment income. It will also cover the remittance basis of taxation and the implications of becoming deemed UK domiciled.

D. Double Taxation Relief:

Expatriates often face the challenge of being taxed in multiple jurisdictions. This part of the guide will explore the mechanisms available to prevent double taxation, such as tax treaties and the foreign tax credit system.

II. Inheritance Tax:

A. Overview and Applicability:

Inheritance tax is levied on the transfer of wealth upon death or certain lifetime gifts. This section will provide an overview of the inheritance tax regime, including who is liable to pay and the types of transfers subject to tax.

B. Taxable Estate and Exemptions:

The guide will explain what constitutes a taxable estate, including assets and reliefs available, such as the nil-rate band and residence nil-rate band. It will also outline exemptions for specific assets or transfers.

C. Rates and Thresholds:

Inheritance tax is subject to progressive rates. This section will detail the current tax rates and thresholds, including any recent changes or proposed reforms.

D. Planning Opportunities:

Given the potential impact of inheritance tax on an individual’s estate, effective planning is crucial. The guide will highlight various strategies and reliefs available to mitigate or reduce inheritance tax liabilities.

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III. Capital Gains Tax:

A. Overview and Applicability:

Capital Gains Tax (CGT) is a tax on the profit made when disposing or selling certain assets that have increased in value. This section will provide an overview of CGT, including the types of assets subject to tax and the individuals liable to pay.

B. Calculation of Capital Gains:

The guide will outline the methodology for calculating CGT, including the base cost of the asset, allowable deductions, and reliefs available. It will also cover the treatment of losses and how they can be offset against gains.

C. Rates and Allowances:

CGT is subject to different rates depending on the individual’s income and the type of asset being disposed of. This part of the guide will detail the current rates and allowances, including any recent changes or proposed reforms.

D. Exemptions and Reliefs:

There are various exemptions and reliefs available that can reduce or eliminate CGT liabilities. This section will explain exemptions such as the annual exempt amount, principal private residence relief, and entrepreneur’s relief.

E. Planning Opportunities:

Effective planning can help minimize CGT liabilities. The guide will highlight strategies such as timing of disposals, use of tax-efficient investment vehicles, and utilizing available reliefs to optimize CGT outcomes.

IV. Succession Planning:

A. Importance of Succession Planning:

Succession planning involves preparing for the transfer of assets and wealth to the next generation or chosen beneficiaries. This section will emphasize the importance of succession planning and the potential impact of inheritance tax on an individual’s estate.

B. Will Writing and Estate Administration:

The guide will explain the importance of having a valid will and the role it plays in estate administration. It will also cover key considerations such as appointing executors, guardians for minors, and the distribution of assets.

C. Trusts and Tax Efficiency:

Trusts can be an effective tool for succession planning and achieving tax efficiency. This part of the guide will provide an overview of different types of trusts, their benefits, and the tax implications associated with their establishment and operation.

D. Lifetime Giving and Tax Implications:

Lifetime giving can be a tax-efficient way to transfer assets and wealth. This section will explore the tax implications of making lifetime gifts, including the potential application of inheritance tax and the various exemptions and reliefs available.

E. Business Succession Planning:

For business owners, planning for the succession of their business is crucial. The guide will discuss strategies such as family succession, management buyouts, and the availability of reliefs such as business property relief and agricultural property relief.

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This concludes Five Key Areas of Tax Planning. The UK Tax Guide provides a comprehensive overview of Capital Gains Tax and Succession Planning. It aims to assist clients of Harkia Tax Advisors in London in understanding the key tax considerations and planning opportunities associated with these areas. However, it is important to note that individual circumstances may vary, and professional advice must be sought before relying on this guide.

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