daily telegraph

Telegraph launches campaign to abolish inheritance tax

National newspaper The Daily Telegraph has this week launched a campaign calling on the government to scrap inheritance tax (IHT).

The newspaper said more than 50 Conservative MPs are also demanding that Prime Minister Rishi Sunak scraps the “morally wrong” tax on people’s estates after they die.

The front-page story pointed out that the number of estates being caught by the tax has soared since the Conservatives came into government amidst continually frozen nil-rate bands.

This, they say, comes despite George Osbourne’s pledge pre-2010 election that the tax would be scrapped for all but the most wealthy of estates.

“The levy is regarded as profoundly unfair as it penalises people who have saved money throughout their lives after paying tax on their income and is punishing middle-class families who want to help children or grandchildren to own homes,” the article states.

This is why the newspaper has launched its campaign to scrap the tax, arguing that this move “should be put at the heart of the [Conservative] party’s next election manifesto”, citing growing fears that Labour will target savings and assets to fund higher state spending should the party occupy Number 10 from next year onwards.

It’s also said that an increasing number of The Telegraph’s readers are writing letters regarding “intrusive probate investigations into their estates”.

Also condemning the tax was former Chancellor Nadhim Zahawi, who said:

“Inheritance tax is that other spectre that haunts us alongside death. As well as being morally wrong to take someone’s assets on their death, it also creates all sorts of inefficient and damaging distortions in our personal finances and the wider economy.”

Former business secretary Jacob Rees-Mogg also called for its abolition, stating it only raised a “modest amount” – £7.1 billion – for the Treasury last year.

The Telegraph also revealed their new analysis which found the number of people paying IHT will increase by 45% over the next 10 years, with the average bill sitting at over £300,000.

They quoted a Treasury spokesperson as saying:

“More than 93% of estates aren’t expected to pay any IHT in the coming years – however, the tax still raises more than £7 billion a year to help fund public services like the NHS and schools.

3 Responses

  1. Uk inheritance tax is the second highest in the world. It is a scandalous and disastrous tax. It is unfair and unjust and also counter productive as cutting hard earned private wealth reduces also investment, business and over all pro capita growth. Most advanced countries such as Sweden, Norway, Australia, Canada to name a few have no inheritance tax at all. Time this country grows up!

  2. This should be made an illegal tax !!
    After paying tax for all the Equity of an estate, why should anyone be taxed again – madness
    It is destroying many estates and landowners with tenants and workers lives being ruined – a way of life that is a part of UK culture – this is really unfair in all aspects !!

  3. It is a tax that penalises those who are not married and/or do not have children and/or are complacent about their financial affairs or simply do not know how to legitimately avoid this tax.
    I accept that most estates are not taxable, but of the taxable estates that we deal with, the majority of them are relatively modest estates of single people with no issue. Is that fair? Supporters of it would say that’s a price worth paying in order to tax the super rich. But the super rich have super financial advisers, accountants & lawyers who advise them about legitimate ways to avoid this tax. And, if all else fails, like the founders of IKEA and TetraPak in Sweden, they will just leave and take their business & wealth elsewhere.
    Even where wealthy (as opposed to super rich) estates are concerned, most are not taxable anyway because the deceased took relatively straightforward steps during their lifetime to mitigate IHT – they made a will, they gifted during their lifetime, they left legacies to charities, they set up trusts, they have businesses or farms, they invested in non-listed stock etc, etc. Those that cannot be bothered or do not know how to take these steps are caught. Effectively they are being taxed because of their complacency or their ignorance.

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