Specialist Discusses Next Steps For Inheritance Tax Post General Election

Gillian Coverley, Partner and Head of the Wills, Trusts and Estates Team, Discusses Inheritance Tax And The Election

08.05.2015

Inheritance Tax has been at the same level since 2009 and the amount of estates being subjected to the tax has increased significantly in that time.

It is encouraging that throughout the election campaign the issue has being discussed seriously as the inheritance tax thresholds have become out of step with the values of estates and this is largely as a result of increased property prices over the last few years.

While we now face a wait to see what policies from the manifesto and pre-election campaign will make it into reality there is still much that can be done to reduce the exposure to Inheritance Tax. Many people are still not properly planning for the future with regard to the finances and assets.

The first step is to make a will, which 60 per cent of British adults still don’t have. It’s also important to consider how to manage any gifts to family or friends or even charity as there can be inheritance tax consequences. There has been a marked rise in the number of disputes over wills or estate administration but if less estates were forced into paying Inheritance Tax it would make the Estate Administration simpler and no doubt reduce the risk of problems occurring.

When issues do arise, there are serious consequences for not carrying out Estate Administration correctly including potentially very large fines. However our research  shows that 50% of the population has no idea how assets should be distributed after death and too many people are trying to do it themselves and often run into difficulties which can be costly to resolve.

Read more about Irwin Mitchell's expertise in Money and Tax and Wills, Trusts and Estates.