§ When the Commissioners of Inland Revenue are satisfied that Estate Duty has become payable on any property passing on the death of any person to which Section one of this Act applies, and that subsequently Estate Duty has again become payable on the same property or any part thereof passing on the death of some other person to which Section one of this Act applies, the whole of the Estate Duty payable on such subsequent death in respect of the property so passing shall be remitted, or, in case the duty has been paid, repaid, and the property shall not be aggregated with any other property passing on such subsequent death for the purpose of determining the rate of Estate Duty.
§ Mr. MONTAGU
When this Clause was under debate the other day, the Noble Lord the Member for Oxford University 400 pointed out that we should do something to protect the corpus of the estate in case there were several deaths owing to the War. We have introduced this Clause in the Bill in order to meet the point more fully than was even suggested on Friday. It not only gives quick succession relief, but we give to every death after the first completed immunity. The Clause as it stands is open to some ambiguity because it might mean it only applies where the estate is left to lineal descendants, and in order to make that perfectly clear I shall move later at the end that this Section shall apply whether or not on any such death the property passes to the widow or the lineal descendant or ancestors of the deceased.
§ Mr. WORTHINGTON EVANS
Before that Amendment is moved. I beg to move to leave out the words "to which Section 1 of this Act applies." and to insert instead thereof the words "killed in the War."
§ The Amendment which the right hon. Gentleman suggested will not meet the case that I am bringing before the Committee. As the right hon. Gentleman says, this Clause is intended to prevent a second Death Duty being paid, but it limits the second Death Duty to persons mentioned in Clause 1, and the only case in which it could apply would be where the father and son are both killed in war, and the grandfather succeeds, or where the father and the grandfather are killed and the grandson succeeds. Surely that is not the intention of the Government; surely it is the intention to protect brothers. Where one brother is killed and the property passes on to another, and he also is killed, and when it then passes to the widow or the like, or to the third brother, surely such a case is intended to be covered. As the Clause now stands, such a case is not covered, and hence I move this Amendment. That part of the Clause would then read—
§ "On the death of some other person killed in the War the whole of the Estate Duty payable on such subsequent death.…. shall be remitted."
§ 4.0 P.M.
§ Sir S. BUCKMASTER
I think hon. Members will see that the Amendment 401 suggested by the Government is much more complete and comprehensive than the one which has been suggested by the hon. Member, and it covers the other points as well. It should be borne in mind that the Clause is intended to provide that where an estate passes more than once owing to the accident of the War, only one Estate Duty shall be charged, and that irrespective of the person to whom the estate passes. That is the intention and purpose of the Clause, and although as it stands it may appear to be ambiguous, the Amendment suggested by the Government will make it clear.
§ Lord HUGH CECIL
I am very much indebted to the Government for having considered this matter so favourably. I know such cases are not very frequent, but they are pathetic cases when they do happen.
§ Mr. WORTHINGTON EVANS
I am quite satisfied with the Amendment which has been suggested by the Solicitor-General, and I ask leave to withdraw my Amendment.
§ Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
§ Sir S. BUCKMASTER
I beg to move to add at the end of the Clause the words "this Section shall apply whether or not on any such death any property passes to the widow or lineal descendants or ancestors of the deceased."
§ Question, "That those words be there inserted," put, and agreed to.
§ Clause, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.
§ Bill reported; as amended, considered; read the third time and passed.