How to value an estate for Inheritance Tax and report its value
What you need to do
To find out if there’s Inheritance Tax to pay, you need to value the money, property and possessions (‘estate’) of the person who’s died.
You must do this before applying for probate (if you need it).
This guide is also available in Welsh (Cymraeg).
You need to complete 3 main tasks when you value the estate.
Identify the deceased’s assets and debts such as savings, investments, mortgages and loans.
Estimate the estate’s value. This will affect how you report the value, and the deadlines for reporting and paying any Inheritance Tax. Most estates are not taxed.
Report the value of the estate - how you do this depends on whether you need to send full details of the estate and its value.
How long it takes
Valuing an estate can take several months, but it can take longer if it’s a big or complicated estate (for example if it involves trusts or there’s tax to pay).
There are only deadlines if the estate owes Inheritance Tax.
If it does, you’ll need to:
- start paying tax by the end of the sixth month after the person died, and before you apply for probate - you can make a payment before you finish valuing the estate
- send Inheritance Tax forms within one year
You can hire a professional (for example a solicitor) to help with some or all of the tasks involved with valuing an estate.
Money Helper has guidance on when and how to hire a professional. Law Donut has advice on keeping solicitors’ fees down.