The Chancellor announced today that the Government will introduce a number of technical changes to Estate Duty legislation. Estate Duty was replaced by Capital Transfer Tax and then Inheritance Tax ("IHT"). The changes will most likely affect the owners of objects, which are exempt from Estate Duty on the grounds of their national, scientific, historic or artistic interest. The changes to legislation, which will be included in the Finance Bill 2016, are: 1) stopping the ability to use certain statutory provisions, which allow IHT to be paid at a lower rate than Estate Duty on death (HMRC will be able to elect for either Estate Duty or IHT to be paid, as with lifetime transfers); 2) creating a charge on objects currently subject to Estate Duty exemption which have been lost (except where they have been lost outside the owner's control); 3) bringing back into charge public galleries and museums which have previously benefitted from favourable tax exemptions on the basis that they were maintained by a local authority and because of their status as independent charitable trusts. More information can be found on the government's website, see link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/estates-duty-and-inheritance-tax-objects-granted-exemption-from-estate-duty
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