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HMRC internal manual

Inheritance Tax Manual

Succession: Scottish Prior and Legal rights: Legal rights: Effect of lifetime disposals on legal rights entitlement

A person of full legal capacity is free to give away, sell, spend, gamble or otherwise dispose of their estate (heritable or moveable), whilst alive. Even if disposals of moveable estate have been made deliberately to make sure there is little or nothing left at their death to meet potential legal rights (IHTM12221) claims, this is perfectly within the law. Those who would otherwise have been entitled to claim legal rights (from the moveable estate remaining at that person’s death) and whose potential rights have been reduced or even extinguished as a result of these lifetime disposals, can do nothing about this.

Where the deceased has made significant lifetime gifts to children (IHTM12252) (or grandchildren) entitled to claim legitim (IHTM12221) on their death, these gifts may, in certain circumstances, have to be brought into the calculation needed to establish the actual sums due by way of legitim to the respective children/grandchildren. This is known as ‘collation’. It does not apply to lifetime gifts made by the deceased to the surviving spouse or civil partner (IHTM11032).

You should refer any cases where collation applies to Technical.