Inheritance Tax Concerns As Rik Mayall ‘Failed To Leave Will’

Situation Faced By Comedian’s Family ‘An Important Reminder’ On Planning

20.04.2015

Specialist will lawyers have described reports that late comedian Rik Mayall’s family could face a major inheritance tax bill as he failed to leave a valid will in place prior to his death as an important reminder of planning for the future.

Reports have suggested that probate records indicate that the Bottom and Young Ones star did not have a valid will in place, meaning by law his wife would receive £250,000 of his estate and chattels while his children would then get half of the remaining value.

If that amount exceeds £325,000, they will then be liable for inheritance tax.

Mayall died suddenly in June last year aged 56 and it is believed his estate is worth somewhere in the region of £1.2 million. His wife declined to speak to the Daily Mail regarding the estate.

Expert Opinion
This is another high-profile case which highlights the difficult issues which can arise when a person fails to put a valid will in place.

"Sadly this is far from an uncommon scenario. Our own research has shown that six in ten people in the UK do not have a valid will, while 47 per cent do not know how their assets would be distributed when they pass away.

"The only way that people can ensure their assets are divided in the manner they wish is by putting a valid will in place that comprehensively covers all aspects of their estate.

"Seeking advice from a qualified professional will also mean that steps can be taken to minimise the impact of inheritance tax, ensuring that your assets are divided in a manner which benefits everyone involved.

"Such advice should also mitigate the risk of friends and family facing difficult disputes or even fractious legal battles to gain access to what they believe they deserve – sparing those involved any further emotional pain after losing a loved one."
Gillian Coverley, Partner