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HMRC internal manual

Inheritance Tax Manual

Determination of questions on previous view of the law: scope of IHTA84/S255

In view of IHTA84/S255, where an assessment

  • was made ‘on a view of the law then generally received or adopted in practice’ (IHTM30452) and
  • the assessed tax was paid and accepted (IHTM30454) in satisfaction of a liability for tax

you have to determine whether the assessment is correct by reference to the same view of the law. You cannot reopen the assessment because it appears from ‘a subsequent legal decision or otherwise’ that the view of the law was or may have been wrong.

We treat ‘a subsequent legal decision or otherwise’ as applying where the former view of the law is subsequently either

  • shown by judicial decision to be erroneous, or
  • is changed on the instructions of HMRC.