Cash gifts

You can choose to leave gifts of specific amounts of money to people in your will.

If you have joint bank accounts which are held as joint tenants, when you die the account will automatically pass to the other person, regardless of the provisions of your will. Therefore, to avoid a disappointed beneficiary, it is suggested that you only make cash gifts out of money you hold in your own name.

For each cash gift you wish to make, you will need:

  • the amount the person is to receive, e.g. £10,000;
  • whether the gift is to be free of inheritance tax;
  • the full name and address of the recipient; and
  • the recipient’s relationship to you (if any) (e.g. your nephew, your granddaughter, etc).

There is no limit to the number of cash gifts that can be included in your will.

You can choose for a cash gift to be index-linked or not. Index-linked means that the gift will change between when your will is written and when you die by the same amount as the general level of prices.

You're not obliged to make cash gifts to specific individuals in your will. If you decide not to, all the money in your estate will simply form part of your residuary estate.

If you want to leave gifts of particular assets or items of sentimental value to nominated individuals, you should use the Gifts of assets and personal possessions section of the interview. This includes the balance of a bank or other account if you are not specifying a particular amount. 

For more information, see our page Gifts in wills.