TAX YEAR END PLANNING PART 3 – IHT
Inheritance Tax is one of the most unpopular taxes, yet it is a tax that you will not pay – your estate might. There are various solutions to reducing or avoiding inheritance tax – talk to me if you want to know more about them. However, each tax year you get some basic allowances that you can use to pass on wealth without any inheritance tax.
Each tax year you can give away £3,000 free of IHT. If you do not use all of the exemption in one year, you can carry forward the unused element, but only to the following tax year, when it can only be used after that year’s exemption has been exhausted.
You can give up to £250 outright per tax year free of IHT to as many people as you wish, so long as they do not receive any part of the £3,000 exemption.
NORMAL EXPENDITURE EXEMPTION
The normal expenditure exemption is potentially the most valuable of the yearly IHT exemptions and the one most likely to be reformed. Currently, any gift is exempt from IHT provided that:
- you make it regularly;
- it is made out of income (including ISA income); and
- it does not reduce your standard of living.
One way to combine the use of your CGT annual exemption with IHT planning could be to make an outright lifetime gift of investments. Such gifts would count as a disposal for CGT purposes and a potentially exempt transfer for IHT. The recipients of the gifts would start with a base cost for the investment equal to the gift’s value and there would be no IHT to pay at any time, provided you survived for the following seven years (possibly reduced to five under OTS proposals).