Government offers pre-owned assets sweetner

Paymaster general Dawn Primarolo has handed a pre-Budget sweetener to the elderly by conceding that parts of the controversial pre-owned assets legislation should not be retrospective, and should not apply to certain schemes.

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A written statement issued by Primarolo on Tuesday said that responses to consultation had made clear that the prospect of a potential double tax charge on assets is ‘preventing some people from making an election which they would otherwise find attractive’.

The changes will ‘eliminate’ this double tax charge so that people can be assured that ‘only one IHT charge will be due whatever the timing of their death’.

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