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HMRC internal manual

Trusts, Settlements and Estates Manual

Deceased persons: interests in residue: practical and computational aspects - legal rights in Scotland

Where an estate is governed by Scots law a beneficiary may benefit from an estate even though the deceased’s will did not leave him either a legacy or a share of the residue. This is because Scots law permits certain individuals to claim what are called legal rights. These individuals include

  • the surviving spouse or civil partner
  • the surviving children
  • the children of predeceased children.

In legal correspondence these rights may be called jus relicti, jus relictae or legitim. It is not necessary to know the meaning of these terms.

Legal rights are a debt due against the estate. They are normally paid with interest from the date of death to the date of payment. The rules at SAIM2440 apply to the taxation of this interest. If it is claimed that the interest was paid under deduction of tax submit the case to Trusts & Estates Technical Edinburgh for advice.