Probate fee changes

Probate fee changes: a new “death” tax?

In March 2017 we reported that the Government was proposing to raise probate fees significantly (see our article here https://www.doddaccountants.co.uk/news/taxing-times-march-2017/).  In fact, “significant” is too understated a word for it – the rise in fees will be a 3,770% increase for some estates!

A new probate fee structure that means estates worth £2m or more will pay £6,000 in probate fees, up from a set fee of £215 – £155 if a solicitor is employed – currently payable, has been labelled a “stealth death tax”. The increase is a reduction on the original plans, which would have seen a bill of £20,000 for the largest estates. Estates with a value of between £1m and £1.6m will have to pay £4,000.

The changes were brought in via a “negative statutory instrument” which enabled the Government to write the changes into law without debate.

The Government said the changes were necessary to fund the courts system and were a “fair and more progressive” way of paying. It estimated the move would raise £185m a year by 2022/23. Many, including the Law Society, have called this unfair and unjustified and it can be seen as a new tax on top of the existing Inheritance Tax.  The Law Society and others fear the changes could force families to use unregulated planning services for IHT in an effort to shield their assets from HMRC.

The fee may cause cash flow problems for some estates which are property rich but cash poor, and – as with stamp duty land tax – there is an inherent flaw in the system that the people who have to pay may not have benefited in cash terms from soaring property values.

Please click here to go back to other Taxing Times stories…

<Mar 2019>
MTWTFSS
1
2
3
4
5
7
8
10
11
12
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31

Mar 19

No events today
For anyone looking for an accountant that ­understands the crazy world of dentistry, then look no further than Dodd & Co. Since taking us on as clients they have understood our needs and told us in no uncertain terms what we must do if we are to succeed. We use them for a full range of services; so many members of our team are in contact with many members of their team. Whatever the ­question, whether it is to the PAYE dept about maternity rights and pay or if we need assistance forecasting figures for the future, it is always dealt with professionally, accurately and quickly. Each and every member of the staff at Dodd & Co is friendly and approachable. They will do all they can to help, and if they can’t help you, they will find a man (or woman) that can. They are quite happy for you to call if you just want to “pick their brains” about something. We use them as a great sounding board to compare where we are locally and nationally, as they have a wealth of statistics on dentistry as a whole. Quite simply, we cannot say enough good things about Dodd & Co and don’t know where we would be without their sound and honest advice.  
-- Ghyllmount Dental Practice