Budget Inheritance Tax – 6,000 miles away from chaos

The busy street in China

Previous Budgets

Julie Hutchison

13th March 2013 at 1:58pm

Budget Inheritance Tax

We were in Hong Kong for a friend’s wedding.  Jet-lag had kicked in and I hadn’t slept well.

In a half-awake state that morning, I switched on the TV news in the hotel room, to be met with a panel discussion about the previous day’s UK Budget.

Things suddenly turned into a Busman’s holiday -budget inheritance tax was the topic for discussion.

This was not good news.  For a mainstream global news channel to be covering inheritance tax as a key story the day after the Budget meant that Something Big Had Happened.

Taxable gifts

This was 2006.  I remember it like it was yesterday.  But as a reminder for those who aren’t (happy!) tax geeks, it was the overnight revolution when certain types of gift to a trust were re-categorised, and became taxable.  The flexibility for families to set aside funds for their children and grandchildren changed without warning.  And existing arrangements could be affected.

This was introduced without advance notice, with all the inevitable problems associated with that.  Since then, we’ve had statements about how tax policy should be formed in the UK, with a focus on the need for stability and the role of consultation.

So, Wednesday’s Budget should be a little quieter. Famous last words?  I’ll be in the UK, as I have been for every Budget since 2006 – not a wise time to take a holiday!  This year I’ll be in our hub at Standard Life, so watch this space for more updates and reaction from me as it happens on the day.

Understand more about the budget inheritance tax changes and tax allowances from HM Revenues and Customs.

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