Currently charitable gifts in Wills are exempt from Inheritance Tax, which is charged at 40%, with those donating over 10% of their estate to charity also receiving a discounted rate of 36% across the remaining value of their estate. The OTS review had questioned whether this incentive to give over 10% should be continued, and it has now found in favour of keeping it.
Tax relief on charitable estates increased by 79% to £840 million in the five years since the 10% IHT incentive was first introduced.
In a joint submission to the OTS, Remember A Charity, the Institute of Fundraising and the NVCO had highlighted the importance of the tax breaks in inspiring legacy giving, and Remember A Charity has welcomed news of OTS’s recommendation.
Rob Cope, Director of Remember A Charity, commented:
“People leave a legacy because they care about the cause and want to leave the world a better place. But tax relief is critical. It can be a powerful incentive for supporters and, most importantly, gives solicitors a reason to open up conversations about legacies, massively increasing the chances of a charitable donation being made.
“Although gifting 10% or more of the value of an estate to charity is something that applies to a minority of Wills, the fact is that those estates yield the highest proportion of legacy income. If current giving levels continue, over the next five years over 10,000 estates will likely benefit from this reduced rate of tax, generating millions in legacy income.”
“We are delighted that the OTS has recognised the importance of this tax break in reaching wealthier donors, but particularly pleased that they have recognised its role in creating conversation about legacy giving between advisers and clients.”
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