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Opinion : Should the estates of those who die of Coronavirus be subject to Inheritance Tax?

| March 20, 2020


Coronavirus is nasty, it can literally effect anyone and in many cases it will be fatal.

It’s bad enough when a family member passes away of old age but the sudden arrival of the Coronavirus is likely to claim lives across the age spectrum.

No doubt some of those who perish will not have taken measures to get their financial affairs in order as they were not expecting to die.

With all the financial support measures the Government has introduced it’s interesting to note they have not suspended Inheritance Tax or as many people call it the ‘death tax’.

In the 2017/18 tax year my (hopefully accurate) research showed the tax man raised more than £5billion through the 40% Inheritance Tax, a record amount.

If anyone should die of Coronavirus and their estate attracts the dreaded Inheritance Tax then the Government will potentially be bolstering their coffers from the death to a tune of 40% above the rate that IHT kicks in. Is this ethical?

Put bluntly, unless IHT is suspended the tax man will benefit if people die of Coronavirus and the deceased person’s estate attracts IHT. In my opinion this is an abhorrent situation.

Surely Inheritance Tax should be immediately suspended for the estates of anyone who succumbs to Coronavirus or it’s related symptoms?

We hear so much about the modelling used to predict the spread of the Covid-19 virus through society however my good self would like to hear the results of a model that predicts how much money the tax man will reap through the Inheritance Tax charged on the estates of the hundreds of thousands of people expected to die in the pandemic.

Some how my good self doubts that the powers the be would want such information published, but no doubt they’ll be happy to accept the money though….

What do you think?

My blogs are published regularly here on the WycombeToday.com website.

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