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Over 50s call inheritance tax ‘double taxation’

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March 28, 2024

The majority of people over the age of 50 consider inheritance tax a form of “double taxation”.

Almost three quarters – 73 per cent – of Mumsnet and Gransnet users expressed this view in a recent poll. Nearly 1,000 users of the social networking sites took part in the survey which asked about their attitudes to finances and taxes.

A significant number of participants – 42 per cent – claimed inheritance tax (IHT) should be abolished outright while 55 per cent said it should exist but only be applied to estates valued at least £1 million. Meanwhile, 49 per cent thought the minimum value of an estate should be £2 million before any IHT is taken. By contrast, only four per cent believed IHT should be increased.

The survey also revealed that 15 per cent planned to spend everything they had before they die, either by buying things for themselves, giving money away or donating to worthy causes. Most of these people said they plan to do so because of the IHT threshold.

Only 39 per cent of those surveyed agreed that IHT was “an important mechanism for reducing inequality across society” while 49 per cent disagreed. More than half supported the idea that passing wealth along to the next generation was a “human impulse and the Government should stay out of it as much as possible”.

Lara Crisp, editor of Gransnet, said many members of the ‘Baby Boomer’ generation “scrimped and saved pretty hard for what they have”. The women “struggled against sexism to build careers”, raise children and are now “giving away much of what they have to support their families”. There was “nothing selfish about them wanting to have some fun at the same time” she added.

Back in August, official figures revealed that Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs collected £4.7 billion in inheritance tax during the last financial year.

The blog team at Stowe is a group of writers based across our family law offices who share their advice on the wellbeing and emotional aspects of divorce or separation from personal experience. As well as pieces from our family law solicitors, guest contributors also regularly contribute to share their knowledge.

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  1. Andrew says:

    The family home should be exempt up to a high limit which should be linked to house prices in the area concerned.
    And if older people downsize they should be able to buy a downsizing bond, earning no interest but redeemable on death at a value increased in line with house prices, exempt from CGT as the main family home is and sharing the exemption from IHT as proposed in the previous paragraph – which would be an inducement to downsizing.

  2. JamesB says:

    The other one is having to pay all your savings and assets and equity on your care as my father does even though he paid tax and NI all his working life and was expecting to be looked after, so, as he has motor neurones disease, all his money goes on his ‘social care’ for that. Completely outrageous and disgusting.

  3. JamesB says:

    Make inheritance 100%, at least that way its fair for all and ensure the elderly get looked after. The way it is I am taxed and taxed and taxed and also my children.

    Meanwhile the likes of David Cameron get gifts of £300k from his mother and messes up the country with very little ability claiming rewards for the grafters not the shirkers, very hypocritical him and people like him.

  4. JamesB says:

    Better still, stop bullshitting people about the NHS being free and actually make it what it is supposed to be and not give some people for free (because they have no money) what others (eg my father, therefore me also and no inheritance) pay hundreds of thousands for.

    While I am on the subject, British Passport holders who are non resident flying in for NHS care, then flying out, never paying tax, illegal, yet they get away with it, also out of order. Sometimes (often) I wonder what good politicians do compared to how much bad and think we need a better system of less bullshit, no wonder people are planning on voting for Trump. Like how he talks about trade in all his speeches, where Clinton talks about nothing.

  5. JamesB says:

    Lawyers, Politicians and Bullshit, non virtuous circle.

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