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Two straight Irish men plan to marry ‘to avoid inheritance tax’

Joseph McCormick December 16, 2017
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Gay and bi men must refrain from having sex with another man for a year before they can donate blood in Canada. (BORIS HORVAT/AFP/Getty Images)

Two men in Ireland have announced their plans to marry each other to get around inheritance tax.

The neighbours, Matt and his neighbour Michael O’Sullivan, have planned to get married before Christmas.

O’Sullivan is a carer for 85-year-old Matt, and they have been friends for 29 years, but neither is gay or bisexual.

wedding rings
Wedding rings

Matt says he wants O’Sullivan to inherit his house after he dies, and they plan to avoid being taxed on the inheritance.

Speaking to RTE, the pair said they will get married on 22 December in County Tipperary, weather permitting.

If the weather is bad, they have said they will postpone the wedding to the new year and travel to Cashel.

Speaking to the Liveline radio show, Matt said O’Sullivan is “my best friend”, and that he deserves the house in Dublin.

He said Matt had been “prepared to look after me in my old age”.

“He’s been part of my life and when I die whatever I have in my home – no problems – he can have it,” he added.

O’Sullivan, who has two daughters and a son from previous relationships, added: “I love Matt… but not in a sexual way.

“He’s one of the nicest people that anyone will ever meet in your life.”

The carer says he wants to inherit the property but that if they are not married he will face an inheritance tax bill of 33 percent.

He says the property would end up being “a burden round my neck”.

Hands wedding rings
Hands wedding rings

Matt has said O’Sullivan will be free to date women after they are married.

His family is on board, and asked whether he would tell women he will date about their marriage, he said: “Probably so, of course I have to tell her!”

Those in the Republic of Ireland who are married are exempt from inheritance tax on property from their partner.

The Republic of Ireland legalised same-sex marriage in November 2015 six months after a majority of its citizens voted for it in a referendum.

Related topics: Europe, Ireland

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