Budget 2020 – Other matters

Inheritance tax (IHT)

There were no changes to inheritance tax rates.

The standard nil rate band remains at £325,000.

As previously announced, the residence nil rate band increases from £150,000 to £175,000 for 2020-21.  There is a tapered withdrawal (at a rate of rate of £1 for every £2) of the additional nil-rate band for estates with a net value of more than £2m.  It is also available when a person downsizes or ceases to own a home on or after 8 July 2015 and assets of an equivalent value, up to the value of the additional nil-rate band, are passed on death to direct descendants.

Any unused nil rate bands can be transferred to a surviving spouse or civil partner

Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT)

A 2% surcharge will be applied for all non-UK residents buying residential property in England and Northern Ireland from 1 April 2021.

Single-use plastics waste

The Chancellor reiterated plans to introduce a tax on the production and import of plastic packaging from April 2022, and launched a consultation.  The tax will apply to plastic packaging which does not contain at least 30% recycled plastic.

VAT and duty on goods carried by passengers

The government is publishing a consultation on the approach to the VAT and excise treatment of goods carried across borders by passengers for their personal use. The consultation will be published on 11 March and run for 10 weeks. It will consider inbound allowances for excise and non-excise goods, outbound duty-free and tax-free sales, and the VAT Retail Export Scheme.

Duty on red diesel

The government is to launch a consultation into the reform of the use of red (reduced duty) diesel.  The Chancellor said that the use within some sectors, such as agriculture and domestic heating, would be protected.

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