Inheritance tax receipts have increased to a record £5.4bn in the 2018/19 tax year according to HM Revenue and Customs figures published today.
Receipts increased by around £160m in just a year from £5.2bn in 2017/2018 to £5.4bn.
HMRC figures show the annual revenue and revenue as a percentage of GDP since 1980/81.
It shows receipts rose steadily until 2007/08 due to increases in the value of tax-liable assets in this period, particularly in the value of residential property.
Since 2009/10, receipts have increased both in terms of annual revenue and as a proportion of GDP.
Receipts increased substantially in 2015/16 as a result of rising asset values and a higher number of deaths in the final months of 2014/15 compared to the same period in previous years.
Quilter tax and financial planning expert Rachael Griffin says: “Taking money from a grieving family who are burdened with the loss of a loved one and sorting their affairs, sounds like something a villain from a Dickensian novel would do.
“Unfortunately, it’s a very real activity in the modern day and one that is reaping more and more revenue for the government.
“Inheritance tax in March 2019 jumped substantially, a 44.4 per cent increase from the previous month, and the government is at a loss for why.”
She adds that receipts for April 2018 to March 2019 are 3.1 per cent higher than the same period last year.
“The 18/19 tax year show that IHT receipts are at its highest level both in annual revenue and as a proportion of GDP.”