CGT query: SP2/04


The executors of an estate are making a CGT return on a sold property. As I understand it, they can deduct conveyencer, estate agent and surveyor fees under TCGA 1992 s38(1)(a) and (c).

I also understand that, on top of these deductions, they can also deduct costs to acquire probate under the SP2/04 formula.

However, is it the case that instead of using the formula, they can deduct their legal costs for all work up to acquiring probate? This was a slightly complex matter and the legal costs dwarf that of the SP2/04 calculation.


The wording of TCGA 1992 s38 1b includes “any expenditure wholly and exclusively incurred by him in establishing, preserving or defending his title to, or to a right over, the asset”. SP02/04 allows for a deduction either based on the scale of expenses set out in that document or “the Commissioners for HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) will accept computations based either on this scale or on the actual allowable expenditure incurred.”

You refer to legal costs for all the work up to acquiring probate and ask if these can be deducted. That will depend on whether those costs were incurred in respect of “establishing, preserving or defending” the title to the property in question.