Making a Will is a good time to consider tax planning. It is important to plan tax: avoiding unnecessary tax; making the most of the exemptions and allowances that are available; ensuring your tax liability is allowed for; and planning your business affairs.

Inheritance tax: currently inheritance tax will be chargeable at 40% on an estate which exceeds the nil band (at present £325,000) save to the extent that the tax exemptions for gifts to a surviving spouse or to charity apply. There are other exemptions and there are special rules for business and agricultural property.

There a number of exemptions from inheritance tax for lifetime gifts:-

  • Any number of gifts to individuals of up to £250 in any tax year;
  • Gifts amounting to £3,000 in any tax year and others.

Substantial inheritance tax can be saved by making proper arrangements for pensions and life policies.

Capital gains tax: rates vary and can be up to 28%; there are limited exemptions.


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