There was a bit of stir caused in the world of taxation over the weekend when ex-transport secretary Stephen Byers suggested that the Government should scrap Inheritance Tax.
Of course, such a move would be roundly welcomed by many, after all, everybody would surely love to see the back of one of the many types of tax that we face – and with rising house prices, many more people are likely to fall into the shadow of IHT – but of course, where one tax is cut or abolished, another way of finding the shortfall must be found.
The Treasury estimates that IHT brings in around Â£3.5 billion a year, which equates to more than 1p on income tax, or 18p on petrol duty. When put in these terms, how many people would be willing to see inheritance tax abolished?
In the end, Mr Byers’ comments, whilst creating a bit of discussion about taxation, which can’t be a bad thing, lack any meaningful substance, and the proposal is unlikely to receive much support until more detail is forthcoming.