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New figures published by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) have revealed a significant increase in the number and value of Inheritance Tax (IHT) receipts.
The figures, which relate to the 2016/17 tax year, show a 15 per cent increase in the number of estates paying IHT in comparison with the previous year, rising from 24,500 to 28,100.
At the same time, there was a three per cent increase in IHT receipts from £5.2 billion to £5.4 billion.
The average IHT bill in 2016/17 was £179,000, with 72 per cent coming from estates worth more than £1 million.
The increase follows a trend that has continued since 2009 and which has been widely attributed to the freezing of the £325,000 IHT threshold.
The new figures predate the introduction of the Residence Nil-Rate Band (RNRB) in 2017/18, which provides an additional tax-free threshold to people who leave their main residence to a direct descendant, such as a child or grandchild.