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Legal News | 19.05.22

From Sam Ryder to Imaani… a step back in time

Like it or lump it, Eurovision is dominating the headlines this week – and for good reason, as the UK’s entry Sam Ryder marked the end of a 24 year period during which the UK failed to attain or exceed second place in the competition (second place was last achieved by UK entry Imaani in 1998).

Are we reliving the 90s? In our Eurovision success, maybe so, but when it comes to Private Client matters, England and Wales are light years away… (excuse the ‘Space Man’ pun).

  • In the early 1990s, the inheritance tax nil rate band allowance was £128,000. Today, it stands at £325,000. Broadly, the nil rate band is the threshold over which inheritance tax is payable when applied to the estate of someone who has died (although if the deceased made lifetime gifts in the seven years before death, the value of those gifts may be deducted from the deceased’s available nil rate band on death).
  • In the 1990s, the residence nil rate band did not exist; it was introduced in 2017. Today, the residence nil rate band can provide an additional £175,000 inheritance tax free allowance, provided the deceased met various criteria.
  • In the 1990s, you could make an Enduring Power of Attorney. This document allowed you to nominate attorneys to deal with your financial affairs only. In 2007, these were replaced by Lasting Powers of Attorney which can cover both your finances and your health (however, validly executed Enduring Powers of Attorney can still be registered so do not panic if you have an Enduring Power of Attorney sitting in a drawer!).
  • Rules relating to Wills are, rather notoriously, set in their ways; the majority of rules relating to Wills were set out in the Wills Act 1837! There was however a development in 2020 when the remote witnessing of Wills became legal (provided a strict procedure is followed). This was intended to be a temporary measure, however it has been extended for a further two years.

If you would like to review your arrangements (particularly if you have not given them much thought since the 90s – or earlier!) please do get in touch with our Private Client team on 01380 733300 or at wealth@wansbroughs.com.


Posted By Our Wills, Tax, Trusts & Probate Team