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HMRC internal manual

Inheritance Tax Manual

HM Revenue & Customs
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Foreign property: Double Taxation Conventions: Double Taxation Relief: examination after grant when relief claimed

If we have provisionally allowed a double taxation credit before the grant as unilateral relief under IHTA84/S159 (1), we must ask the taxpayer or agent for evidence that the foreign tax has been paid. To accept that the relief is final we will need:

  • the assessment of foreign tax (or other document showing details of the property charged), and
  • the official receipt

Where a double taxation credit has been deducted before we have issued the grant and we have a Double Taxation Convention (DTC) with the foreign country, you must:

  • consider the provisions of the relevant convention
  • and follow the instructions at IHTM27190.

When the taxpayer or agent asks for double taxation relief after the grant has been issued and tax has been paid:

  • If unilateral relief only is due, you should ask the taxpayer for evidence that the foreign tax has been paid. We will need the assessment of foreign tax (or other document showing details of the property charged) and the official receipt.
  • If the relief is due under a DTC you should consider the terms of that convention and ask for the appropriate certificate of tax paid.

You must not make an interim repayment of tax before we have the evidence we need. If the taxpayer or agent presses for a repayment you should tell them that the collection of tax on the account is always provisional, but once tax has been paid it can only be repaid if it is ‘proved to the satisfaction of the Board that there has been an overpayment’ (IHTA84/S241 (1)).

In Compliance, you can allow the relief once you have the evidence.

In Service, you must refer the file to Service Technical Support (STS) once you have the evidence. STS will tell you whether or not you can allow the relief.

If the taxpayer or agent asks whether an interim repayment can be made before you have the evidence you should write to them, stating that we can only consider giving an interim repayment if:

  • The Legal Personal Representatives are resident in the UK
  • They supply an estimate that specifies the individual items in respect of which foreign tax is considered to be payable. The claim must be supported by a corrective account signed by the (UK) liable persons,
  • They produce the official assessment of foreign tax


  • on the clear understanding that the official receipt (or appropriate Double Taxation Convention certificate) for payment of the foreign tax assessed (or any amendment of this) will be sent to us and that any further IHT which may then be due is paid.

Before making any provisional repayment, you should verify the situs of the property concerned and check the estimated amount of the foreign tax to make sure that the figure claimed is not excessive. You should make it clear that the appropriate Double Taxation Convention certificate, or the official assessment of the foreign tax as well as the receipt for its payment, will be required before we can agree the provisional credit allowed.

If you think it may be difficult to collect the correct amount of tax (for example because none of the liable people live in the UK) refer the papers to DMB