The family home: new Inheritance Tax (IHT) rules
The government has announced, in the Summer 2015 Budget, the introduction of a new transferrable nil rate band for the family home. The additional band will apply where a residence is passed on death to direct descendants such as a child or a grandchild.
What are the changes?
This will initially be £100,000 in 2017/18, rising to £125,000 in 2018/19, £150,000 in 2019/20, and £175,000 in 2020/21. The additional band can only be used in respect of one residential property which has, at some point, been a residence of the deceased.
The allowance is in addition to the inheritance tax nil rate band which is currently set at £325,000. By 2020/21 the total individual nil rate band will therefore be £500,000, with part of it only able to be used against an eligible property transfer on death.
Any unused nil rate band may be transferred to a surviving spouse or civil partner. It will also be available when a person downsizes or ceases to own a home on or after 8 July 2015 and assets of an equivalent value, up to the value of the additional nil rate band, are passed on death to direct descendants. This element will be the subject of a technical consultation and will be legislated for in Finance Bill 2016.
There will also be a tapered withdrawal of the additional nil rate band for estates with a net value (after deducting any liabilities but before reliefs and exemptions) of more than £2 million. This will be at a withdrawal rate of £1 for every £2 over this threshold.
The IHT nil rate band is currently frozen at £325,000 until April 2018. This is to remain frozen until April 2021.
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Jenny Brown is a personal tax manager at Hawsons, based in the Sheffield office, who manages the personal tax affairs of our clients. She started her career with HM Revenue and Customs, specialising in small business compliance. For more details and advice, please contact Jenny on [email protected] or 0114 266 7141 or your local tax specialist.[/author_info]