Inheritance tax


If someone dies and leaves assets that are worth more than £325,000, their estate will normally have to pay inheritance tax at the rate of 40% for every pound over this threshold (at time of writing).

Inheritance tax can also become due if you give a gift during your lifetime. In these circumstances it is vitally important to get legal advice about the inheritance tax you might have to pay before you make the gift.

Calculating inheritance tax

The estate of the deceased person will usually be looked after by what is called the executor. It is the executor’s responsibility to calculate any inheritance tax that is due and make the payments. All the assets of the estate must be taken into consideration, not just the property that the estate owns.

As some property could have been jointly owned, taking legal advice about whether to include these assets in the estate’s value is very important. This will ensure your valuation is accurate.

Typically, inheritance tax is thought of as a sum paid on the death of an individual; however, this is not always the case, as certain transfers made during the lifetime of the person who is now deceased might trigger inheritance tax to be charged.


Inheritance tax also has a number of exemptions that you should be aware of:

  • The main exemption is if a spouse or civil partner jointly owns any assets within the estate. In these cases, inheritance tax won’t normally be due
  • Further, any gifts made to charities will normally not pay any inheritance tax

In some cases the estate of the deceased will be disputed. If this is the case, the support and help of a qualified solicitor will be essential.

The probate court which hears any grievances will want to see proper legal representation for the deceased’s estate. And if your handling of the estate as the executor is also disputed or criticised, a solicitor can also help you defend your case.

As you can see, inheritance tax laws can be quite complex as much of the work involved requires acute calculations and a very sound knowledge of the tax reliefs and exemptions available. Professional assistance is available throughout the UK so instruct a specialist inheritance tax lawyer for help with your tax problems.

Do you need inheritance tax planning advice in dealing with your estate, or the estate of which you are the executor? Contact Law can put you in touch with a specialist wills and probate solicitor who is experienced in giving inheritance tax planning advice. Please call us on 0808 129 5761 or fill out the web-form above.

0808 129 5761
or fill in the form
Our trained advisor contacts you
Your chosen specialist solicitor calls you
Quick enquiry form
Area of law:
What our clients say about us
"This was the first time I've been to court, which was a nerve-racking experience for me. However, I felt very prepared, I understood my case and representation - this was down to you."
Gavin, criminal motoring, Oct 15
"Your service, and the prompt call back from your recommended firm was very good. I would not hesitate to call again or recommend your service."
Ian, employment law, Truro, July 15
"The firm were excellent, could not have been better! They are exactly what I need right now."
Linda, criminal defence, Thames Ditton, Jul 15
"Your contact and service was immediate and utmost professional, 10/10."
TF, conveyancing, Dudley, Jun 15
"I appreciate the service that you provide. I found you to be courteous, efficient and reassuring at a time when my confidence in justice is completely negative."
Patrick, litigation, Pontypridd, Jun 15
"I cannot tell you how much I appreciate the speed of which you came back to me in. If anyone else can benefit from your help like I have done, it would make my day."
Gail M, family law, Potters Bar, Jun 15
"Your assistance was extremely helpful. Particularly to someone who in 40 years of business has never experienced this sort of issue."
TD, commercial litigation, Galashiels, Apr 15
"It is difficult to express the value Contact Law has to someone like me who had very little understanding of the law and how to proceed forward with my case. Thank you for the service you provided."
AE, defamation law, Worthing, Apr 15
"Thank you for the efficient service I received. I was contacted by your solicitor on the same day as my request. Your quick response to my situation made me feel secure."
AN, employment law, London, Apr 15
"Your service was excellent, very fast and informative. I never got the impression of being pressurised at all. The solicitor you recommended was also excellent – very knowledgeable and supportive."
JHD, Motoring law, Liverpool, Apr 15
Contact Law supports the endeavours of STAE and commends all the work they are undertaking to assist in the plight of the Asian Elephant


We use cookies on the Contact Law site to help us improve it.

If you would like to allow our cookies, please click 'Continue' or carry on browsing. For more information on cookies and how to change your settings, click 'More info'.