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Will was misinterpreted

01 February 2011
Issue: 4290 / Categories: Tax cases , Inheritance Tax
RSPCA v Sharp and others, Court of Appeal

The claimant challenged the executors’ interpretation of the testator’s will. The deceased testator had bequeathed his estate to his brother two lifelong friends and the RSPCA.

The will provided for an amount up to the nil-rate band to be left to the brother and friends and for his property to be left to the brother and one of the friends with the residue going to the RSPCA. Tax was to be paid out of the residue.

The nil-rate band when the deceased died was £300 000. The executors who were the two friends paid themselves and the brother a total of £300 000.

They also transferred the deceased’s property worth £169 000 to the brother saying they believed from the will that this was the deceased’s intention although this resulted in inheritance tax becoming due on the property....

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