New figures released by the Government show that inheritance tax payments netted just under £5 billion for the 2016 / 17 tax year.

This was the highest figure ever recorded for inheritance tax, and 4% up on the previous financial year.

The rise has been attributed partly to the old perennial of high property prices, but also to strong performance by the stock market. The effect of these are fuelling increases in the value of estates.

Figures for inheritance tax receipts for the first quarter of the 2017 – 18 tax period are even more alarming, indicating an increase of 22% compared to last year.

Inheritance tax is a tax on the total value of the estate when someone has died.

We all have a tax free allowance of £325,000 – known as the nil rate band. What we own above that value can be taxed at 40%, which could mean you leaving substantially less to your loved ones.

The law around inheritance tax is, however, far more complex than that, and reducing the tax you could pay requires specialist advice. Contact Phoenix Wills and Probate to see how we can help.

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