In the case of married couples or civil partners the executors of the second death can be subject to meeting certain criteria applying to HMRC, to utilise any unused nil rate band of the first to die in order to reduce any tax liability. In many cases the first to die may have left their entire estate to the surviving spouse in which case it is possible the whole of the nil rate band may be transferred.
It is important to remember a significant period of time may elapse between the two deaths and it is critical therefore to retain copies of papers relating to the probate of the first to die. HMRC will require details of the first to die in order to ensure a legitimate claim is being made. It is sensible to retain a copy of the grant of probate, tax return and any other papers submitted on the first death and these to be kept with your Will or other personal papers so they are available to the executors on the second death.
At Edward Hands & Lewis we have qualified and experienced solicitors on hand to provide impartial advice on probate and the administration of estates.Talk to our legal team
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