Gifting by wealthy family members to their children has soared over the past three months but post-COVID tax planning is not the primary driver, report private wealth lawyers at UK law firm Royds Withy King.
Rod Smith, partner and head of Royds Withy King’s private client team in London, said the firm had seen a three-fold increase and a degree of urgency in gifting to family members in the past three months as wealthy parents look to help children affected by COVID-19.
“Whilst those families are very aware of their inheritance tax liabilities and that government’s COVID support measures will need to be funded by tax increases, gifting is not being driven by any desire to minimise future IHT liabilities," Mr Smith said.
“Gifting is often part of long-term financial planning even if not formalised into action – it is often something older family members mean to do but often do not get around to doing. COVID has accelerated the plans of many older family members as the realities of the pandemic hit and by a genuine desire to help family members that have been affected.
“Clients have told us that with the country in lockdown for many months and further restrictions likely, the importance of family ties has become more important. The value...