Inheritance Tax Changes 2017


Changes are being made to Inheritance Tax which may benefit people who want to pass on their estate including their home to their spouse and immediate family.


If you give your whole estate to your spouse or civil partner you will apply for the existing tax-free threshold of £325,000 (the Nil-Rate Band, NRB) which can then be used on the second death to gain a tax-free threshold of £650,000 at the moment.


From 6th April 2017 you will also qualify for the Residential Nil-Rate Band (RNBR) for estates worth up to £2 million. The RNBR will apply when a home is being passed on to closely inherited lineal family including children or grandchildren and step children. The RNBR can also be transferred to your spouse to use on the second death if ultimately the home passes to your children and so on. You may also be allowed to apply for the RNBR if half your house is put in trust after the first death and also if you downsize your home or move to a retirement home.

The RNBR is being phased in each year starting in the 2017/18 tax year:

  • 2017-18: £100,000
  • 2018-19: £125,000
  • 2019-20: £150,000
  • 2020-2021: £175,000


Your Will may need to be updated to make the most of this new tax-free allowance but we also suggest you review your will every five years.


For further information on the changes please contact Livingstons on 01229 585555


Our employment team has received (and continues to receive) a large number of requests for help from companies who would like assistance with interpreting the ongoing changes to the furlough scheme and/or who are advance planning for when the furlough scheme comes to an end.  Some of this planning may involve consideration of short-time working or even redundancies and some involves dealing with specific concerns that returning employees may have about health and safety or about childcare and other obligations.

We have produced a number of factsheets for our employer clients which explain the Government guidance and which provide some practical guidance on how to deal with some of these matters.

If you have any specific queries about ending your furlough scheme or need any assistance with restructuring your business in light of the ongoing economic difficulties caused by the Coronavirus pandemic, please e-mail Steve Walker at or Gail Black at

Full details of how we are dealing with Coronavirus are available here.

We will do everything possible to keep disruption to a minimum during this difficult time.