Rene Lalique: Perruches Vase (Detail)


Aside from valuations for probate and inheritance tax there are other types of valuations for tax purposes.


Family trusts which include art and antiques are set up as a tax vehicle in order to delay payment until is thought desirable to do so. Trustees are legally responsible to have items for which they are acting independently valued on a regular basis.


When a work of art or antique is sold there may be a capital gains tax liability. This is assessed as the difference between the last agreed date of market value and the amount for which the item now sells. Annual tax allowances may reduce this figure but it still needs to be independently assessed by a valuer who has a good profile with the tax authorities. Members of RICS are acknowledged by HMRC as being reliable and trustworthy.

  • For capital gains tax purposes, the base date currently set at 31/03/1982. In other words, if an item has been owned by the taxable party prior to this date the earlier date is disregarded.
  • For inheritance tax purposes as at the gift or transfer date.


The estate of a trust involves a detailed inventory and valuation.

This acts as the base for future tax calculations should it be decided to dissolve the trust. Some trusts are set up as tax vehicles when an individual has chosen to relocate to a different tax jurisdiction when such a document is legally required.

Although we initially raise a bill based on the time taken to compile a tax valuation, we usually waive it provided we are given the agency to sell on behalf of executors or trustees. Our advantage over individual auction rooms is that we can place items for sale wherever they will achieve the best net return.

We always provide a photographic record to allow easy identification of the objects in question, some of which trustees may never have seen. Values are given at current auction levels to allow for efficient forward planning.

Additional valuation services:

A Queen Anne chocolate or coffee pot made by Richard Green, 1712
Richard Green:
A Queen Anne chocolate or coffee pot, 1712, 21½oz