In last year’s budget, George Osborne offered a cut in inheritance tax if people donated to charitable causes, a move aimed at stimulating the floundering idea of the Big Society; the move meant if you qualify to pay inheritance tax but you give 10% of your estate to charity, the rate of that tax is reduced from 40% to 36%.
Fast-forward a year to Osborne’s 2012 budget, in which it was announced that tax relief on charitable donations will be capped at 25% of one’s income or £50,000, whichever is higher. How are the two policies consistent? One encourages charitable donations with the promise of a reduced inheritance tax bill whilst the other is specifically aimed at warning individuals that such donations should not allow them to avoid paying tax. In keeping with most of the government’s fiscal measures, it’s a mess. Read the rest of this entry
The simple ‘vote for us to pay less tax’ slogan has always been a feature, and often a very effective one, of Conservative campaigning. In 1992 I remember being told by a lifelong Labour supporter on Tyneside that, with a heavy heart, they would be voting Conservative as they couldn’t afford to find £1250 extra tax a year (the Labour tax bombshell poster had been prominently displayed at the rundown shopping centre between boarded up shops). Click here to keep reading