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Thread: Where to start with Unit Trust tax?

  1. #1
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    Where to start with Unit Trust tax?


    First off, this place looks awesome, and I think I can learn a lot by sticking around here (and I have in the lurking I've been doing so far),

    Anyway, to my question (I'll try as give as many details as I can, hopefully they will be pertinent):

    My Mother passed away when I was young and set up a trust fund for me. Up until yesterday, I would receive a very modest allowance to cover rent while I'm at University (late bloomer, I know, should have a degree by now, but I'm on the right track for a very nice career now so all is well). Yesterday (my birthday) the trust terminated and I was informed that it would not be possible for me to receive the allowance anymore and that I needed to fill in a list of documents and decide what I want to do with the money. The email they sent, unfortunately, is not very clear (or I simply don't speak enough legalese), but from what I can gather I can:
    A) get the money paid to my bank account;
    B) create another trust and transfer the money;

    The main thing that confuses me is a form they sent along to fill out called "Indemnity and Promise to repay Tax" that reads:
    I promise to indemnify the Trustees of the above trust, from any responsibility the trust may have to pay tax after I have received my share of the trust property from the trust. This means that I promise to pay any tax that the trust must pay or to repay any tax that has been paid for the trust, plus any interest or penalties.
    This scares me. How do I know if I owe any tax? Surely they know better than I? And what is my best move. take out the money as a lump sum or in instalments of some kind? How will tax apply to it?

    So, in the interest of keeping this whole thing on-topic (I really want to start my own company, and this may be the injection of liquidity I need to start things off) where should I go read up on this? While an answer to my specific questions would be appreciated, I feel like being pointed in the right direction, towards resources where I can find answers to later questions would be more useful (teach a man to fish). My google-fu has failed me, so I'm hoping somebody will be able to help.

    PS. So on a read-through, this post is a bit rambling, sorry. Also, I feel like maybe I need to take the matter to a professional and get a definite answer to the matter. So I guess I'll add the question, where can I find a tax professional?

  2. #2
    Gold Member Houses4Rent's Avatar
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    Mar 2014
    Cape Town
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    Unit trust or a trust (discretionary or testamentary) which dissolves on you reaching a certain age are two very different things. By the sounds of it I think the latter applies. Why not ask the authors of this letter what advise they can offer. Give us more info and we might be able to give you more ideas.

    There is also a recent thread on trust accountants and trust attorneys. Use the search function on the forum.

    If you want me to give you the people I use for my trusts send me a PM with your email address.
    "We treat your investment as we treat our own"
    Global Residential Property Investor / Specialized Letting Agent & Property Manager

  3. #3
    Platinum Member Mike C's Avatar
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    Apr 2012
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    Hi ConfusedVagrant. Maybe these links would be helpful?
    An education isn't how much you have committed to memory, or even how much you know. It's being able to differentiate between what you do know and what you don't. - Anatole France

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