Deeds of variation still tax effective – for now
Tucked away in the small print of the Policy Paper “Autumn Statement and Spending Review 2015” is confirmation that the review of deeds of variation has been completed and the government will not introduce new restrictions on the use of deeds of variation for tax purposes but will continue to monitor their use. (Autumn Statement and Spending Review 2015, paragraph 3.37). So in appropriate cases it is worth building flexibility into Wills to allow for the possibility of another review and changes in years to come.
Meanwhile deeds of variation can still be used where there are good reasons, whether tax or otherwise, for beneficiaries of Wills to redirect their inheritance. But there is no substitute for regular review of Wills to avoid unwanted consequences such as paying to a beneficiary who is in receipt of means tested benefits or going through a divorce.