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HMRC internal manual

Inheritance Tax Manual

Instruments of Variation: time limits

The statutory periods in the legislation are

Where the instrument is executed on or after 1 August 2002

  • the instrument must be made within two years (IHTM35024) of the date of death, and
  • the instrument must be sent to us within six months of its execution if it contains a statement of intent (IHTM35028) that IHTA84/S142 (1) applies to it and it results in additional tax being payable.

Where the instrument is executed on or after 1 August 2002 it must incorporate a statement of intent. The taxpayer will not have the option to submit a separate statement. If the instrument of variation does not include a statement of intent you should advise the taxpayers that IHTA84/S142 (1) will not apply to the variation. If the taxpayers do not accept this you should refer the case to Technical.   

Where the instrument was executed before 1 August 2002

  • the instrument must have been made within two years (IHTM35024) of the date of death, and
  • a written notice of election (IHTM35027) must have been given to the Board within six months of its execution.