10 things advisers want from the Budget

10 things advisers want from the Budget
Rishi Sunak, chancellor of the exchequer

New chancellor Rishi Sunak is set to deliver the first UK Budget since October 2018 this week against a backdrop of tanking oil prices and a growing public health crisis.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer will present his plans for the coming legislative period on Wednesday (March 11), and the adviser community is praying for a scrapping of the tapered annual allowance and a shake up to Stamp Duty.

Here are 10 things that have made the adviser wish-list for Wednesday's Budget.

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1 Scrap the taper

Most advisers are keen to see the chancellor scrap the tapered annual allowance, which has caused NHS doctors to give up overtime to avoid hefty tax charges.

Joanna Leyland, director at Momentum, said: "I think the tapered annual allowance for pension contributions has to go, especially given all the press around doctors reducing their hours in order to avoid being penalised.

"It’s far too complicated and counter-productive."

Scott Gallacher, director at Rowley & Turton, added the levy was "somewhat daft" given it affected the middle-affluent group of earners the most.

2 Simplifying all tax rules

Julian Pruggmayer, adviser at Financial Risk Management, said: "The first thing [I want] is a simplification of all the tax and benefit rules, but we won't get that as it would give us a chance of being able to discuss with HMRC on their own level."

Tim Morris, adviser at Russell and Co, agreed, and urged the chancellor to introduce a simple flat rate of 30 per cent to pension tax relief.

Tax has become "ever more complicated", said Paul Stocks, director at Dobson and Hodge, who added pension relief and the savings tax allowance were examples of rules which needed to be simplified.

3 Inheritance tax shake up

Sarah Drakard, adviser at Cruze Financial Services, said she looked forward "with trepidation" to an IHT shake up.

She said: "[The IHT rules] need clarification and modernisation. I'd love to see changes which reflect the more modern set ups of families."

Martin Bamford, head of client education at Informed Choice, agreed, adding that a radical shake up could encourage more lifetime transfers of wealth.

One area in particular was the residence nil rate band, according to Mr Morris, who thought it should be replaced with a higher general nil rate band.

4 Long-term stability

Mr Pruggmayer claimed the main thing advisers and their clients were after from Mr Sunak was long-term stability.

He said: "We want stability so that people can plan with a degree of certainty for the next, say five to 10 years."

Mr Gallacher agreed, claiming that "less change" was "generally better".

5 Social care plan

The government has failed to act on social care reform in recent years, with the long-awaited green paper, promised since 2017, put on hold indefinitely last year.

But some advisers say this desperately needs to be addressed. Mr Morris said: "We need further funding for social care. This is becoming an ever growing time bomb."