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HMRC internal manual

Shares and Assets Valuation Manual

IHT Business Property Relief: Calculation of value attributable to ‘excepted assets’

Because of the diversity of circumstances of valuation, it is not possible to lay down detailed rules as to the calculation of that part of the value transferred to be left out of account in determining the value of relevant business property. The answer lies in a fair and even-handed approach to the calculation of the difference between the value of the shares arrived at with the excepted asset included in the company and the value with the excepted asset excluded.

For this purpose, where an ‘excepted asset’ was subject to a mortgage, charge or other debt at the valuation date, the net value of the asset should be looked at. An ‘excepted asset’ should not be reduced by a proportion of the uncharged debts. This is because we have to compare the value of the shares if the excepted asset were removed from the company with the value of the shares if it were not.

This does not prevent you taking into account the need for sufficient liquidity to cover the payment of liabilities in determining what constitutes an excepted asset in the first place - particularly as regards the amount to be treated as surplus cash. Once you have determined the amount of cash and/or other assets to be treated as ‘excepted assets’, you should not reduce them further.

Decisions in this area need to be commercially sensible and realistic and bear a measure of consistency with the means adopted for the valuation of shares.

  Additional Guidance: SVM150000