asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he is aware that where an individual bought War Loan at £100 and died, and the holding was subsequently sold by his widow at a price higher than that at date of death or 6th April, 1965, she will have to pay Capital Gains Tax; and if he will introduce legislation to extend to widows the same basic valuation methods as would have been available to her spouse.
My right hon. Friend is aware of the position but could not support the hon. Gentleman's proposal.
Is not this yet another anomaly which has been produced by the very unfair practice of extending the Capital Gains Tax to War Loan? Will the right hon. Gentleman specifically confirm that a husband and wife are grouped together for the purposes of Income Tax and for some parts of Capital Gains Tax, and will he look at this again to see if a compromise can be reached?
I will look at it again, but not very hopefully.
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether it is his intention that the levy foreshadowed in Cmnd. 2771 shall exclude the imposition of short-term Capital Gains Tax on the realised development value on which it falls.
No, Sir, but the amount of levy paid will be allowed as an expense for the purpose of the short-term gains tax.
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether investments held by the High Court in trust for widows and infants and subsequently transferred to a common investment fund to be controlled by the Public Trustee are to be liable to Capital Gains Tax, even though the original purchase price is higher than the price at which the investment is trans- ferred from the High Court to the Public Trustee.
Yes, as the law stands. But as the hon. Gentleman knows, my hon. and learned Friend the Financial Secretary has already promised to consider the matter.
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that it is now five and a half months since the Financial Secretary promised to consider this very deserving cause? Is he further aware that beneficiaries of the High Court are suffering because of the bad trusteeship of the Masters of the High Court, and that if this is allowed to continue as it stands it will create great injustice to those widows and orphans who can ill afford to lose money in this way?
I am sure that with the hon. Member's great knowledge of these matters he appreciates that this is a very complicated matter, which affects large numbers of persons and requires careful consideration.
If anything is done in this matter, will the hon. Gentleman give an assurance that it will be retrospective?
No. I cannot give that kind of assurance.
Whatever may be the rights and wrongs of this matter, will the hon. Gentleman make it clear that it is not the fault of the Masters of the High Court?
I am grateful that the hon. and learned Gentleman should think so kindly of the Masters, one of whom happens to be my brother.