Q&As

A deceased client funded the purchase of a house which their partner moved into and lived in with her for two years up to her death. He did not contribute any capital or outgoings but may have brought a little bit of furniture into the house. No written agreements were made between the deceased and their partner. The deceased left the house to him in her Will. The agents’ valuations are for vacant possession at the date of death. Is there authority to discount that value for inheritance tax purposes to take account of the partner’s right to occupy the house?

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Produced in partnership with Chris Bryden of 4 King’s Bench Walk
Published on LexisPSL on 29/07/2020

The following Wills & Probate Q&A produced in partnership with Chris Bryden of 4 King’s Bench Walk provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • A deceased client funded the purchase of a house which their partner moved into and lived in with her for two years up to her death. He did not contribute any capital or outgoings but may have brought a little bit of furniture into the house. No written agreements were made between the deceased and their partner. The deceased left the house to him in her Will. The agents’ valuations are for vacant possession at the date of death. Is there authority to discount that value for inheritance tax purposes to take account of the partner’s right to occupy the house?

A person is generally free to leave their property by Will to whomsoever they may choose, provided that the Will complies with the necessary formalities relating to its execution contained within section 9 of the Wills Act 1837. In this scenario, it appears clear that the deceased was the legal and beneficial owner of the relevant property, and that it has been left to the partner by Will, meaning that, subject to an assent or other transfer of the property by the personal representatives (in whom the property will have vested), the partner will be the legal and beneficial

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