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Majority ‘against lowering inheritance tax threshold’ – poll

28 Sep 2023 3 minute read
TUC General Secretary Paul Nowak. Photo Stefan Rousseau PA Images

The majority of people oppose any reduction in the £1 million inheritance tax threshold, new polling commissioned by the Trades Union Congress (TUC) suggests.

Only 20% advocate for a reduced tax, while the remainder, 60%, wants the tax to either remain as it is or be increased, according to the polling conducted by Opinium on behalf of the TUC.

The survey of 2,084 UK adults also found this opposition extends to those who voted for the Conservative Party in the 2019 general election, with 62% expressing a desire against cutting it.

TUC general secretary Paul Nowak warned against the consequences of such a tax reduction, saying it was “reckless in the extreme” amid the ongoing strain on public services.

He said: “Nothing works in this country any more. But instead of getting on with fixing our public services, the Conservatives are considering a tax giveaway to millionaires.

“Abolishing inheritance tax would be a huge tax cut for a very small, very wealthy minority and drain £7 billion from the public purse each year.

The Government is reportedly considering raising the inheritance tax threshold, potentially leading to its complete elimination.

Liz Truss

The move would come amid growing demands from prominent Tories, including former prime minister Liz Truss and former cabinet minister Nadhim Zahawi.

But according to the TUC, the polling highlights a disparity between the Government’s considerations and the public’s desires.

TUC general secretary Paul Nowak warned against the consequences of such a tax reduction, saying it was “reckless in the extreme” amid the ongoing strain on public services.

He said: “Nothing works in this country any more. But instead of getting on with fixing our public services, the Conservatives are considering a tax giveaway to millionaires.

“Abolishing inheritance tax would be a huge tax cut for a very small, very wealthy minority and drain £7 billion from the public purse each year.

“Slashing it would be reckless in the extreme and an act of levelling down.

“It’s no surprise that a clear majority of the public oppose lower inheritance tax thresholds and instead want the wealthiest to pay their fair share.

“At a time when our NHS is on its knees, school buildings are crumbling and runaway inequality is blighting every corner of the country, the last thing we need is an unfunded tax cut for the wealthiest.

“The Conservatives have broken Britain, and they seem hell-bent on making things even worse. It’s time for a reset. We need an economy that rewards work, not wealth.”

The polling was conducted by Opinium between August 23-25.

On Monday, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak was silent on speculation that he was considering changes to inheritance tax, saying only that “the most important tax cut I can deliver for the British people is to halve inflation”.

But Defence Secretary Grant Shapps described the duty as “punitive” and “deeply unfair”.

Inheritance tax is levied at 40%, but the vast majority of estates fall below the threshold, which can be up to £1 million for a couple, to incur the charge.


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Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
8 months ago

It is one thing that unites everybody with a few bob and a pile of bricks, you can’t take it with you but you can keep it in the family…Pros and Cons on a postcard…

hdavies15
hdavies15
8 months ago
Reply to  Mab Meirion

Last I heard it was 2 x £325k for a married couple. You can safely assume that in our later life the value of any house will have been spent on patchy under-resourced care services, or the house survives and the loot gets spent. I think it all has to be spent less a residual £50k before the State steps in to cover the cost of the patchy care provision until your light goes out. As ever IHT is only a threat to those in the middle ground who get stuck with a care bill or a tax bill. The… Read more »

The Mayor of Mynachlog Ddu
The Mayor of Mynachlog Ddu
8 months ago

let’s start with the `English Royal family and their trusts etc. becoming liable for IHT and CGT

and press them to hand back those Wales coastal areas (that will pay an annuity / dividend from wind / tide generation etc. to the Y Cymry.

then instead of faffing around with 20mph speed limits, that lot at the bay need to take responsibility, ownership control of Welsh Water and the potentially vast revenues streams to be gained from ‘exporting’ water over the next decades.

Iago Traferth
Iago Traferth
8 months ago

Ah yes Welsh water and potential vast revenues – just a pipe dream. Our water, but we aint got hospitals jobs and airports. Wales’ biggest employer His Majesty’s Government our airports of choice are in England and why are there always Welsh ambulances outside border hospitals. We do not as yet have basic facilities to look after our own people. That should be our priority!!!

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