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Inheritance Tax

There is NO Inheritance Tax (IHT) liability upon any assets passing from a deceased person's estate to their surviving spouse. 


A widowed person can pass up to a total of £325,000 to their beneficiaries free of IHT. They may also use their deceased spouse’s available allowance of up to £325,000 in addition to this. Also, if someone is unlucky enough to have more than one deceased spouse, they may use as many additional allowances of £325,000 as they have predeceased spouses. 


If a widowed person is passing their residential property to DIRECT descendants (children, grandchildren, etc.) then they have an individual maximum of £175,000 of RESIDENTIAL IHT tax-free allowance in addition to their basic IHT allowance as outlined above. They may also use their deceased spouse’s RESIDENTIAL allowance (provided their predeceased spouse co-owned the residential property alongside the deceased when the predeceased spouse died), but the tax-free allowances are capped at the value of the residential property at the point of the surviving spouse's death.

This means that a deceased widow with one predeceased spouse can pass up to £1 million of estate value free of IHT.

Single and divorced people have just one allowance of £325,000 and one additional RESIDENTIAL allowance of up to £175,000. Therefore, they may pass up to £500,000 of estate value free of IHT.

The benefit of the RESIDENTIAL allowance will diminish for estate values above £2 million.

Social Care

If you are unable to find the information you need on this site, then please contact Michael Cotterill, WITHOUT COST OR OBLIGATION, on either
01392 949003 or 07784 028708

If you prefer, you can email him at 

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