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My father has excluded my brother from his will leaving everything to me – I don’t think it’s fair. Is there anything I can do about this and what are the inheritance tax consequences for me?

Rebecca Willmott

Rebecca Willmott

Probate Legal Executive


You can either give your brother a large financial gift from your own pocket once you receive your inheritance however for the value of this gift to fall outside your estate for inheritance tax purposes, you must survive the gift by 7 years.

Alternatively, if it is under 2 years since your father died you can make a Deed of Variation which will vary the terms of your Father’s Will to divide his estate how you wish. All parties affected by the variation must agree, but if minor children are affected the court’s permission may be required.

Certain conditions must be complied with in order for there to be no inheritance tax implications for you, these include:

  • The variation must not be made for any consideration in money or money’s worth (i.e. your brother cannot compensate you in another way for the benefit he is receiving via the Deed)
  • It must be in writing
  • The Deed must contain a statement relating to the section of the Inheritance Tax Act which applies to the variation

Its vital that you obtain independent legal advice before making any changes to any inheritance that you receive to ensure all formalities have been complied with.

For further information please contact our Wills & Probate team.