HC Deb 03 February 1938 vol 331 cc410-1W
Sir A. Knox

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is the normal time required by the revenue authorities for winding up the estate of deceased persons; and whether it is possible to speed up this work in the interests of widows and others, who are often put to inconvenience?

Sir J. Simon

The responsibility for winding up the estate of a deceased person rests with the executors or administrators and not with the Revenue authorities, who are concerned only with the assessment and collection of the death duties which become payable on the death. The settlement of liability involves the obtaining of all necessary information and the determination of any legal or other points of difficulty that may arise, and the time required must of necessity vary in different cases. I can, however, assure my hon. and gallant Friend that, so far as the Revenue authorities are concerned, every effort is already being made to ensure that all cases are dealt with without avoidable delay.