The prospect of an inheritance tax overhaul has led to an outpouring of suggestions from financial experts.
Chancellor Philip Hammond has called for a review of IHT, asking the Office of Tax Simplification (OTS) to ensure the system is “fit for purpose”.
The chancellor called the current system “particularly complex” and asked the OTS for proposals to simplify it. Mr Hammond said the review should focus on technical and administrative issues, including the process of submitting returns and paying any tax due, as well as practical issues around routine estate planning and disclosure.
“When the government uses the phrase “simplification”, professional advisers fear the worst,’ said Wilfrid Vernor-Miles, partner at law firm Hunters Solicitors. Ask any pensions adviser how “pensions simplification” has worked over the past 10 years. A simplification of the inheritance tax rules is long overdue but any tinkering on the fringes only compounds the problem, such as the newly introduced and ill-conceived residence nil rate band. More and more estates are falling into the inheritance tax net, which is generating twice the revenue it did only a few years ago, but still only raises less than 1 per cent of total UK government receipts. Yet for those affected, it is an emotive topic and a minefield to navigate.”
Read the full article in Mail Online UK here. Wilfrid’s comments were also featured in Tax Journal.