HC Deb 29 April 1909 vol 4 c516

I now come to the period within which gifts made during the lifetime of the deceased are reckoned as part of the estate for the purposes of estate duty. The loss to the revenue arising from voluntary dispositions inter vivos, made with the purpose of avoiding the death duties, cannot be precisely ascertained; but it is probably very considerable, and I fear that resort to this expedient may become still more common when the rate of duty is raised. I therefore propose to substitute five years for one year, as the period within which property so alienated shall remain liable to duty. I am not sanguine that this reform will do more than operate to check what at present is thought to constitute a considerable leakage of revenue; and I do not therefore feel justified in estimating any positive increase of revenue from the alteration.

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