The study, based on the latest publicly available regional data on tax receipts, shows that in the 2010-2011 tax year, inheritance tax was paid on around 15,600 estates with a total bill of £2.6 billion.
London and the South East of England have been identified as the UK’s inheritance tax hotspots by the Prudential analysis. The two regions accounted for as much inheritance tax revenue as the rest of the UK put together.
The £1.3 billion in receipts from London and the South East represented half of all the inheritance tax paid nationally, even though only 42% of liable estates (a total of around 6,500) were in the two regions.
In both Northern Ireland and the North East of England only 200 estates were liable for inheritance tax, yet many individual counties in the South East of England saw far more estates above the threshold – including Surrey (810), West Sussex (530) and Hampshire (500).
HMRC reviewed nearly 260,000 estates in the 2010-2011 tax year, meaning inheritance tax was paid by only 6% of estates, a figure similar to the two previous years. This is much lower than years between 2005 and 2008, when more than 10% of estates were liable for inheritance tax.
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