Budget 2014: Initial Analysis20th Mar 2014
Chancellor George Osborne’s 2014 Budget will bring about wide-ranging changes to pensions, savings and personal taxes.
Our legal team is poring over the details that underpin the headline announcements. Here are their initial thoughts:
Wills, Probate and Trusts Associate Stuart Bradford said: “The reduction in taxation on your pension pot from 55 per cent to either 45 per cent, 40 per cent or 20 per cent (based on your income) is a step in the right direction.
“Fifty five per cent was a significant chunk to lose if you took the cash out of your pension pot. However, it is still 45 per cent at the top end and 40 per cent if you have a reasonable amount put aside.
“Regarding the Inheritance Tax threshold waived for emergency services personnel who die in the line of duty, it’s hard to see how your normal bobby on the beat, ambulance driver or fireman would have assets over and above the current £325,000 IHT threshold.
“Also, there are no taxes levied on bequests between spouses. Furthermore, on the death of the surviving spouse there is a joint IHT allowance of £650,000,” he added.
Personal Injury Partner Adrian Cormack said: “The Chancellor George Osborne announced he will be providing £200 million for local authorities to repair potholes.
“Unfortunately, given the recent floods which have wreaked havoc on our roads, the funding is not going to go far amongst local authorities.
“Most local authorities have indicated that there is a £10 billion road maintenance backlog and it will be for them to bid for money for the repairs. Pedestrians and motorists need to see the repairs carried out now.
“Pedestrians and motorists are urged to contact the local authority if they see or become aware of a pothole that is a hazard to a pedestrian or could cause damage to vehicles.”
Planning Consultant James Cain said: “An extra £140 million for flood defence repairs and maintenance is a short term fix.
“The bigger picture is that we have a growing population, therefore more houses will be required.
“Pressure to build within the flood zone will increase (as will pressure on the green belt and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty AONB).
“So we need to look at countries that have a successful history of building sustainably in flood zones such as the Netherlands. We need to look to ‘design out’ the impact of flooding,” he added.
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