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New United Kingdom monarch King Charles III received a massive inheritance from his late mother, Queen Elizabeth II.
Thanks to a nearly 30-year-old British law, he won’t pay a cent in taxes.
According to Fox Business, the inheritance tax on estates with values greater than $377,000 in the U.K. is a whopping 40 percent.
The Duchy of Lancaster, which King Charles inherited when Queen Elizabeth died, is valued at more than $750 million.
If King Charles had to pay the 40 percent inheritance tax for the property, he would owe almost $200 million in taxes. Instead, he will pay absolutely nothing.
This is because in 1993, Parliament passed a law exempting the king from having to pay property taxes on property inherited from the death of the previous monarch, Fox Business reported.
As the Duke of Cornwall, Charles developed his duchy — the land governed by a duke or duchess — into an empire.
The New York Times reported King Charles “assembled a large team of professional managers who increased his portfolio’s value and profits by about 50 percent.”
The Duchy of Cornwall is now worth approximately $1.4 billion and spans 130,000 acres, including farmland, vacation rental properties, London office space and more.
Laura Clancy wrote the book “Running the Family Firm: How the Monarchy Manages Its Image and Our Money,” and she told the Times that King Charles changed the game by treating the duchy like a corporation.
“The duchy has been steadily commercializing over the past few decades,” Clancy said. “It is run like a commercial business with a C.E.O. and over 150 staff.”
King Charles will pass control of the duchy down to his oldest son, Prince William, who will continue to develop it as his father has. As he does so, he will not have to pay corporate taxes.
The duchy already brings in “millions of dollars a year in rental income,” the Times reported.
The portfolio King Charles inherited from Queen Elizabeth is worth about $949 million, slightly less than the one he will hand off to his son.
King Charles will also inherit some of Queen Elizabeth’s personal wealth, but the amount has never been made public.
Overall, the Crown Estate holds more than $30 billion in assets, Fox Business reported. This includes multiple large properties, such as Buckingham Palace.
The monarch’s property profits all must be given to the U.K. government, but King Charles will still have a substantial income funded by taxpayers. The treasury pays the monarch an equivalent of 25 percent of the profits from the crown’s estate.
Clancy said King Charles will be expected to leave his business ventures behind as the new monarch, but she said the question of whether he would truly do so remained open.
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