ESTATE DUTY. This duty is imposed upon the principal value, i.e. the gross price it would sell for in the open market at the date of death of deceased, of all property, real or personal, which passes on the death of any person after August 1, 1894, unless it be an estate under £100 or some of the other exemptions mentioned in the Finance Act, 1891.
The executor or administrator is required to furnish particulars of the property of the deceased person.
The estate duty is due to be paid upon the delivery of the account by the representa tives of the deceased, or a t the expiration of six months from the death. Three per cent. simple interest is charged upon the duty from the date of death of deceased, until it is paid, but after six months the rate is increased to 4 per cent.
In the case of duty upon lands it is a charge upon the lands, and when deeds of a pro perty which has passed upon a death are given as security a certificate of payment, granted by the Inland Revenue authorities, should accompany the deeds, though in practice it rarely does.
Estates of a less value than £100 are exempt from estate duty.
The estate duty payable upon real pro perty may be paid in eight equal yearly instalments or sixteen half-yearly instal ments, with interest at 3 per cent. from the date at which the first instalment is due. The first instalment is due at the expiration of twelve months from the date of the death.
The Finance (1909-10) Act, 1910, Section 5-1, imposes the rates of estata duty in the following table, in the case of persons dying on or after April 30, 1909 :— In the case of property which is settled by the will of the deceased (except where the only life interest is the husband or wife of the deceased), or which has been settled by some other person and passes to someone who has no power of disposing of it, a settlement estate duty is imposed by the same Section upon the principal value of the settled property at the rate of two per cent. in the
case of persons dying on or after April 30, 1909.
Where the gross value of the property upon which estate duty is payable does not exceed £300, a fixed duty of 30s. may be paid, and where it does not exceed £500 a fixed duty of 50s. may be paid instead of the ad valorem duty in the above scale.
As to the estate duty on property which passes to the executor as such, the executor, being the only person accountable for it, must charge the duty on all such property (which passes to him as executor) against the general residuary personal estate. Although, with few exceptions, real pro perty now vests in the executor, it never theless does not pass to him as such, and the estate duty thereon is payable out of the real property itself and not out of the residuary personal estate, but the estate duty oa real property is payable out of the residue where a testator directs the payment of his debts and duties.