Reynolds portrait donated to the nation in lieu of inheritance tax

  • September 05, 2016
  • By Hunters Law

The Howard family has donated a portrait by Joshua Reynolds to the Tate Britain under the government’s Acceptance in Lieu (‘AIL’) scheme to settle a £4.7m inheritance tax bill.

An important portrait of the 5th Earl of Carlisle by Sir Joshua Reynolds, which has hung at Castle Howard in North Yorkshire for more than 200 years, has been accepted for the nation in lieu of £4.7m inheritance tax under the AIL scheme.

The AIL scheme enables taxpayers to offer culturally or historically important works of art and heritage objects to public institutions in full or part payment of their liability to inheritance tax, thereby allowing such items to be preserved for public benefit and at the same time providing a way of settling an inheritance tax liability.  Offers need to be accepted by H M Revenue & Customs, who then give the taxpayer the full open market value of the item, before allocating the object to a public museum, archive or library.

Whilst legal ownership of the Reynolds portrait has been allocated to the Tate Britain, it will remain, for the time being, on public display at Castle Howard under the terms of a loan agreement.  The painting will however be displayed at Tate Britain and elsewhere across the country in the future.

For more information, please contact the partner having responsibility for your affairs, or any partner in the Private Client Department here.

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