King ‘should pay tax on inheritance’: Two-thirds of us say Charles III should stump up for inheritance from the Queen, poll shows
Nearly two-thirds of the public believe the King should pay tax on his private inheritance, a poll has found.
The Queen agreed to pay income and capital gains tax in 1993 – but ‘sovereign-to-sovereign bequests’ are exempt from inheritance tax.
Her Majesty’s personal wealth was estimated at £370million, which would make the King liable for an inheritance tax bill – usually charged at 40 per cent above a £325,000 threshold – of £148million.
Now a survey by YouGov has found 63 per cent of the public believe he should pay inheritance tax.
Nearly two-thirds of the public believe the King should pay tax on his private inheritance, a poll has found
In the poll, commissioned by campaign group Tax Justice UK, 16 per cent said the King should not pay inheritance tax, while 21 per cent did not know.
The monarch’s overall wealth is estimated to be around £24billion, including property such as Buckingham Palace which belongs to him only in an official capacity.
It is managed by the Crown Estate, which surrenders any profit earned to the Treasury, receiving a portion of this as the Sovereign Grant to fund the monarch’s official duties.
Campaigners have claimed this should be exempt from inheritance tax, while the Queen’s personal wealth, which included property, private investments and racehorses, should be taxed.
Robert Palmer, from Tax Justice UK, said: ‘It’s clear that a big majority of the public think the King should pay inheritance tax on the private fortunes he has just inherited.
The monarch’s overall wealth is estimated to be around £24billion, including property such as Buckingham Palace which belongs to him only in an official capacity
‘The status quo is pretty ridiculous given how much the Royal Family has in their private fortune.
‘This is just one of many examples of how very wealthy people can pay low levels of tax and legally avoid paying what is due to the Exchequer.’
But defenders of the rules argue that it is wrong for the Royal Family’s wealth to be whittled away with each generation.
Inheritance tax remains deeply controversial because it tends to hit middle class earners hardest as very wealthy individuals are able to exploit legal loopholes, such as gifts and trusts.
In 2016, the new Duke of Westminster inherited £9billion almost tax free when his father died because his estate was held in trust.
The result of the poll came as King Charles planned a slimmed-down coronation next spring to reflect his new-look monarchy.
Sources have said the new sovereign would like his ceremony to be ‘shorter, smaller and less expensive’ to acknowledge the nation’s cost-of-living crisis and to reflect how the Royal Family will operate under his leadership.
YouGov interviewed 1,705 people between September 15 and 16.