Today, Rishi Sunak refused to rule out lowering the inheritance tax.
Reports claim that the Prime Minister may reduce or even eliminate charges paid on estates after death in order to reclaim wealthier votes in the South East.
According to The Sunday Times, one suggestion being discussed is for Mr Sunak to announce his desire to phase out the levy by lowering the 40% inheritance tax rate in the Budget in March, while laying out a roadmap to eliminate it entirely in future years.
Quizzed about inheritance tax during a visit to a community centre in Broxbourne, Herts, Mr Sunak insisted: “I never would comment on tax speculation, of which there is always plenty. What I would say is that the most important tax cut I can deliver for the British people is to halve inflation.”
“It is inflation that is putting up prices of things, inflation that is eating into people’s savings and making them feel poorer – and the quicker we get inflation down, the better for everybody.
“We are making progress, we saw that in the most recent numbers. The plan is working, but we have got to stick to the plan to bring inflation down and that is the best way to help people with the cost of living.”
Labour has said Mr Sunak would save himself £300million by scrapping inheritance.
Over the weekend, Cabinet Minister Grant Shapps termed inheritance tax “punitive” and “deeply unfair,” but said Chancellor Jeremy Hunt was in a “fiscal straitjacket.”
The levy for inheritance tax is 40%, although the vast majority of estates fall below the threshold, which can be up to £1 million for a couple. According to the most recent numbers for the tax year 2020-2021, just 3.73% of UK deaths resulted in an inheritance tax (IHT) charge.