When it comes to planning with shares in a private limited company on death, if those shares qualify for BR, the moral is very much not to waste this relief.

For example if, on his death, the shares owned by a husband pass to his wife, no IHT will apply because of the spouse exemption – this therefore effectively wastes the BR. The alternative is for the husband to leave the shares to his children under his will, which means that BR will then be relevant. This action may be particularly appropriate if:

(a)the children are involved in the running of the business; and

(b)sufficient provision has been made for the benefit of the surviving spouse and so he or she is financially secure.

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