Well done Sirrah!

HM Revenue & Customs has published new inheritance tax data today.

This chart shows the proportion of the total of this tax paid in the UK’s regions in 2013/14 which is the most recent for which there is data.

OK

Isn’t it obvious why we need a policy for redistributing wealth in the UK?

What, like inheritance tax, capital gains tax, housing stamp duty and all the rest?

31 comments on “Well done Sirrah!

  1. “Isn’t it obvious?”, rather like “can’t you see?” usually signifies someone who can’t actually explain themself and.is trying to deflect the focus.

  2. Isn’t more obvious why we need a policy to stop them feckless northern bastards mooching off the industrious southerners.

  3. Surely it would be simpler to redistribute the wealthy people. Just like Uncle Joe.

    As fertiliser?

  4. I tried to make the point to him that IHT is redistributive, Didn’t get past his moderation, as expected.

    He has upset a few people with his anti Corbyn stance and is arguing with people about tax. Of course he only publishes criticism when he has a put down.

  5. If its a measure of anything its relative house prices. Really really rich dead people don’t pay inheritance tax.

  6. Ah, but Alastair, their undeserving offspring do. There are those who believe that passing on wealth to the next generation (directly that is) should not be allowed. All young people should have the same opportunities, some should not be blessed with privilege through receiving a couple of million from their parents.

  7. There are also those of us who believe that if we bequeath large sums to our offspring it means we have not lived long enough and well enough.

  8. Does any country treat rich people kindly. and do they advertise?
    Investing in rich families would seem a good idea .

  9. When Murphy talks of redistribution, he just means giving it to people like him (worthless bureaucratic drones).

  10. “Does any country treat rich people kindly. and do they advertise?”

    Monaco?

  11. Funny (not ha ha) how lefties have such a problem with people benefiting from inheritance, yet they are quite happy for us to inherit the liability for their billions of national debt.

  12. Technically it is the estate that pays IHT not the beneficiaries of the will.

    I’m currently advising a friend who, sadly and prematurely, has terminal cancer. Being a single mum who worked her arse off and managed to build up a small portfolio of buy-to-let properties, she is loathe to give any of it to the taxman rather than her 18 year old daughter. What to do? Well, as she has a close female friend who is happy to help, she could marry her in a civil marriage and then when she passes away her grieving widow can settle the property into a trust with the daughter as beneficiary. Providing the friend lives 7 years, IHT is avoided.

    Of course, that can’t be the plan at the outset and I’m sure it isn’t. There certainly won’t be anything written down to suggest it. It just might turn out that way.

  13. Andrew C,

    Sad story, I hope all works out well for the daughter.

    Inheritance tax is one of those area where left and right have a fundamental disagreement because we come from polar opposite. When we think about the subject we imagine the likes of your friend, people who are self made and want to pass on something to their children. When the left thinks about it they imagine someone who has vast amounts of wealth that has been in the family for generations and nobody did in real work to generate it.

    The problem with the left’s view is that they imaging creating more equality and social mobility but if that is the aim it is too late because the children will have in large part benefited from the money through schooling and connections.

    For me your friend’s case is more important and I’d rather those few family’s with vast inherited wealth kept it rather than punish those who’ve worked hard and, usually, made sacrifices such as missing birthdays.

  14. @ Andrew C
    The executors have to pay the IHT *before* they can take control of the estate, so that is *theoretically*, not even “technically”.
    A legacy to the daughter of less than the IHT theshold (adjusted for other bequests and IHT-liable gifts in the previous 7 years) would not be liable for tax and would increase plausibility. Best of luck.

  15. Presumably unused carried back pension contributions already maxed out. I’m a bit rusty but can’t one drop directly held real estate into pension pot and then on death the pot (up to lifetime limit) can go tax free to dependants? Probably not much help if property is in south east given contribution limits.

  16. BiND: the ideological split is even more fundamental than that. It’s expressed in the normative language that the two camps use (‘unearned’ income vs. ‘hard-earned’ income etc.), and most generally in the worldviews which see liberties as negative or positive rights. Under the Left’s formulation , the reciprocal condition that the State imposes as a result of ‘granting’ all these positive ‘rights’ is that it has first claim on anyone’s assets or even labour.

  17. BiCR,

    Fair point.

    Off topic but sort of related.

    I was recently talking to my son and his girlfriend about immigration and the worker to dependant ratio and how its changed from when the welfare state was set up, about 10:1 IIRC and is now heading towards 2:1 as we baby boomers retire.

    I’ve just been out for a run and was musing this point and whether or not we would still need immigrants even if we could call everyone in to full employment including those jobs that Brits appear to not want to do eg farm labouring, nursing home care etc. I then remembered the piece about forced labour in Venezuela and the silence of the left. I started to amuse myself by imagining the outrage on the left if the Tories proposed forced labour in, say care home. It made the run go a bit quicker 🙂

  18. If you set it up right then there is no taxable estate. Seems simple enough as a concept. Btw I have no interest in the politics, of envy or otherwise.

  19. Andrew C,

    Not something I’ve checked, but wasn’t there once a scheme where you could drop buy-to-let properties into a company to qualify for business property relief? The company had to be trading (which buy-to-let isn’t, so you needed to have it do something else as well – holiday lets usually, although that’s getting difficult), but once it was trading the restriction on BPR only caught non-business assets, not non-trading ones, and although but-to-let isn’t a trade it is a business.

    Don’t know if it still works or ever works, just something I have a vague memory of reading about that may be worth investigating.

    Alternatively, wasn’t the other technique to load up the buy-to-let properties with mortgages, then use the cash to buy exempt assets, usually AIM shares? Does that still work with the new debt allocation rules? Ideally to avoid commercial risk you could find someone who wanted to invest in AIM shares and borrow from them via some sort of non-recourse loan with an asset-linked interest rate. Would that work?

  20. @ Richard
    You need to have held the AIM shares for two years prior to death – I gather Andrew C’s friend doesn’t have two years to spare.

  21. @ AndrewC
    Have you looked at getting a power of attorney (appointing yourself or the close friend or the daughter) in case your friend’s cancer renders her incapable of making decisions near the end of her life?

  22. As Instapundit pointed out a day or two ago, the Left have no problem dumping our debts on future generations, but don’t seem to want us passing on our wealth.

  23. John, I thought perhaps she might manage the two years, just not the seven for a lifetime gift. Cancer can give quite long notice periods. But yes, neither of my suggestions is any good unless that’s a reasonable possibility.

  24. @Tim Newman

    My thinking exactly (I was paraphrasing @TheAliceSmith off Twitter).

    Lefties generally seem to be unbalanced, take that as you will. For example, it is fine and legal for the public sector to go on strike (with a few honourable exceptions), yet not okay for the taxpayer to refuse to cough up. Very one-sided thinking.

  25. Thank you to everyone with their kind comments and suggestions. It is good to know that there are people who recognise achievement and effort and worth and why we should be fighting to reward this and not penalise it.

    Thank you.

  26. Andrew C

    Slightly belated but I wish your friend all the best. The continued left wing attacks on people who have the temerity to work hard and reject public ministration from the army of serfs in the non productive Public sector are one of the most distasteful aspects of modern day political discourse. Let’s hope the solution she comes up with works to frustrate the likes of Murphy with their arrogant assertion that the state has the first claim on everything.

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