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JGM, Solicitor
Category: Scots Law
Satisfied Customers: 12092
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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I am the trustee of first Scottish, a charity based in Scotland

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I am the trustee of first Scottish, a charity based in Scotland and registered with OSCR(the office of the Scottish charities regulator )
A cousin, based in England ,died recently and I was advised that if 10% of the estate was left to charity then inheritance tax would be reduced from 40% to 36%. There were already some charitable bequests and our solicitor in London was instructed to create a deed of variation, so that a further request was made to First Scottish to achieve the 10% threshold. The deed was submitted to Counsel who came back with the following paragraph
(6) In order for the reduced rate of IHT to apply, it is most important that the legacy to First Scottish is effective. I note that the charity is registered with the Scottish Charity Regulator. This is of great assistance, but will not be conclusive for IHT purposes. The safest approach would be for First Scottish to register with HMRC charities.
I would be grateful for your advice on how this matter can be quickly resolved, especially since the two-year deadline for the deed of variation expires in January 2015. Counsel advises registration of First Scottish with HMRC. I presume that is by using form ChA1 but I wonder how long it would take to get a registration number.
Your opinion and advice is welcome.
Thank you for your question.
You should complete form ChA1 and submit it to HMRC immediately. The application should take no more than 6 to 8 weeks to determine assuming all relevant information is supplied with the form.
I hope this helps. Please leave a positive response so that I am credited for my time.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks, ***** ***** still a very small margin for error or mischance.

I sent off the papers as you advised yesterday to HMRC, but I would still be grateful if you could advise

- Any further action by me, which could speed up the process.

- When is the absolute deadline for HMRC receiving the deed of variation? And when should it be sent and by what means to guarantee beating the deadline of 20 January 2015 ?

any other advice, of course , welcome.

thank you very much


1. All you can do to try to speed up the process is maintain communication with HMRC by telephone.
2. The two year period for the Deed of Variation relates to the entering into the Deed of Variation. It has nothing to do with sending it to HMRC.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks, ***** ***** to be absolutely sure, as long as the deed is signed and dated by the relevant parties before January 20, 2015 (death occurred 2 years before)is that sufficient for the deed to take be in place?

Is there a deadline by which the deed needs to be submitted to HMRC?

You will see that we are applying for an exemption from 40% to 36%, which I presume requires authorisation from HMRC having seen the deed of variation. Is that correct?

Many thanks


Yes it has to be signed within two years.
I am not aware of any deadline for showing the deed to HMRC.
Authorisation is not needed. The tax laws allow for the reduction.
The following link may assist you:
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


I I have spoken to HMRC charities which insists that that processing takes 10 weeks which takes us very near the 20 January deadline.

Does the charity need to receive approval from HMRC before we sign in order to gain the tax exemption, or would it be acceptable to sign the deed of variation before January 20 - without approval - and then submit it to HMRC once approval has been granted ?

I have checked your helpful link but could find no guidance on this crucial aspect .

I look forward to this final word from you .




The deed of variation has to be entered into within two years and can be shown to HMRC thereafter once approval has been given.
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