My father-in-law owns six flats with long leases (999 years) on them with a peppercorn ground rent. The flats have tenants in them paying rent. He wants to gift the leases to the flats to his two children (i.e. three flats each) but avoid capital gains tax (CGT). Is this possible?
Arthur Weller replies:
In short, it is not easy to avoid CGT on gifting the flats to his children. If he waits until he dies to leave the flats as an inheritance, there will be no CGT, but there will be inheritance tax. If he is married, it may be possible to avoid CGT. There may also be a possibility to avoid CGT by gifting to a discretionary trust. But both of these ‘strategies’ require advice from a tax adviser, and even where possible, both are limited in scope.