Demos

The value of inheritances in the UK has grown significantly in recent decades. Over time, this is likely to lead to increased inequality and reduced social mobility. Demos is undertaking a programme of research to gain greater understanding of public attitudes to inheritance, and build a coalition for reform. The reports from this project are free to download below.

 

The Inheritance Tax Puzzle - public attitudes to inheritance tax (June 2023)

This report is based on a nationally representative survey of over 2,000 people - the most in-depth survey to date on attitudes to specific inheritances and how people explain their views. It explores people’s attitudes to inheritances and inheritance tax, and identified a profoundly nuanced and complex picture of public attitudes to inherited wealth.

The research found that whilst the public does express initial opposition to taxing inheritances, when presented with specific inheritances - such as certain amounts of money or types of asset - the public are much more supportive of taxes.

People’s attitudes are also shaped by their own expectations of how much they will leave in inheritance. For example, those expecting to give over £200,000 in inheritance typically think that the threshold should be 10 times higher than those expecting to give between £1,000 and £5,000. Equally, homeowners typically think the threshold should be five times higher than renters.

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