Inheritance tax needs reviewing

Legal experts claim that more money should be given to parents who still care for their children if their spouse dies early without writing a will.

Laws in England and Wales state that £125,000 from an estate can be given to the spouse or civil partner of the deceased.

They will also receive interest on half of the remainder of the estate, but the rate is unchanged since 1993, forcing some to call for an update in the law.

In the event of a spouse dying without a will, some families claim that they would be forced to sell the family home as they would be left with a hefty inheritance tax bill.

Alastair Collett, partner at law firm Bircham Dyson Bell, told BBC Radio 4's Money Box that laws needed to be reviewed.

"The greatest complaint that comes up is that the statutory legacy doesn't allow the spouse to stay in the house," he explained.

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Published on: July 8, 2008

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