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HMRC internal manual

Inheritance Tax Manual

Life Policies: policy on the deceased’s life not connected with any other transaction (except a trust): policy effected by the deceased for their own benefit but gifted later: introduction

The transfer of a policy is a transfer of value (IHTM04024), and the claim is on the value of the policy at the date of transfer for Inheritance Tax purposes. The guidance at IHTM20231 explains what this value is.

In addition if the deceased paid any premiums on the policy after the transfer, each payment is also a transfer of value. The claim is on the amount of each premium (IHTM20082).

The transfer should be notified on form IHT403 - there are procedural instructions at IHTM20041 onwards.

If there is a reservation to the donor, there may be an alternative claim under the Gift With Reservation (GWR) (IHTM14025) rules if the policy was given to a non-exempt beneficiary.