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Newsletter August 2019

Our newsletter this month highlights: changes next year to private residence relief, a note of the new Digital Services Tax due to start April 2020, news of a new initiative to have electric car charge-points in new homes and a possible extension of statutory sick pay to the lower paid.

Our next newsletter will be published on Thursday, 5 September 2019.

Changes to private residence relief

If you rent out all or part of your home this may create a Capital Gains Tax (CGT) charge when you sell the property.

Presently, HMRC excludes the last 18 months of your ownership ? even if the property is let for this time ? when assessing any CGT liability. In a draft of the Finance Bill released last month, HMRC have confirmed that this 18 month period will be reduced to 9 months from April 2020.

The exemption for disabled property owners or those in a care home will continue to be 36 months.

The draft Finance Bill also confirms a change to the letting relief rules.

Letting relief is an extra deduction you can make from any CGT payable as a result of letting your home. You can claim the lowest of the following three amounts:

  • The same amount that you can claim as private residence relief.
  • 40,000.
  • The same amount as the chargeable gain you made from letting your home.

From April 2020, you will only be able to claim this letting relief if you are in shared occupancy with the tenant.

Property owners contemplating the disposal of their home ? which is or has been let for any period - may be advised to complete their sale before April 2020. In this way they will benefit from the 18 month exemption and the more flexible lettings relief.

Internet giants face tax-hike

It has been confirmed that from April 2020, the government will introduce a new 2% Digital Services Tax (DST) on the revenues of search engines, social media platforms and online marketplaces which derive value from UK users.

This is an attempt to tax, in the UK, revenues earned by these social media platforms from customers resident in the UK. At present, significant profits are being earned in the UK but transferred off-shore thus avoiding UK taxation.

In the notes confirming that these changes would be included in the Finance Bill 2019, HMRC said:

The revenues from the business activity ? subject to DST - will include any revenue earned by the group, which is connected to the business activity, irrespective of how the business monetises the platform. If revenues are attributable to the business activity and another activity, the business will need to apportion the revenue to each activity on a just and reasonable basis.

A UK user is a user that is normally located in the UK.

The Digital Services Tax will apply to businesses that provide a social media platform, search engine or an online marketplace to UK users.

These businesses will be liable to Digital Services Tax when the group’s worldwide revenues from these digital activities are more than 500m and more than 25m of these revenues are derived from UK users.

New homes to have car charge-points

In a bid to accommodate yet more electric vehicles on our roads, the government has launched a consultation aimed at increasing the number of homes with electric car charge-points. In a recent press release they said:

“All new-build homes could soon be fitted with an electric car charge-point, the government has outlined today (15 July 2019) in a public consultation on changing building regulations in England. The consultation comes alongside a package of announcements to support electric vehicle drivers and improve the experience of charging.

The proposals aim to support and encourage the growing uptake of electric vehicles within the UK by ensuring that all new homes with a dedicated car parking space are built with an electric charge-point, making charging easier, cheaper and more convenient for drivers.

The legislation would be a world first and complements wider investment and measures the government has put in place to ensure the UK has one of the best electric vehicle infrastructure networks in the world ? as part of the 1.5 billion Road to Zero Strategy.

The government has also set out today that it wants to see all newly installed rapid and higher powered charge-points provide debit or credit card payment by Spring 2020.”

The government has already taken steps to ensure that existing homes are electric vehicle ready by providing up to 500 off the costs of installing a charge point at home.

Low paid workers to qualify for sick-pay

The government has started a consultation to transform support for sick and disabled staff and remove barriers for employees.

The Department for Work and Pensions has recently set out new measures to transform how employers support and retain disabled staff and those with a health condition.

Under the new measures the lowest paid employees would be eligible for Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) for the first time, while small businesses may be offered a sick pay rebate to reward those who effectively manage employees on sick leave and help them get back to work.

Under current legislation, to be eligible to receive SSP you must:

  • be classed as an employee and have undertaken work for your employer,
  • have been ill for at least 4 days in a row (including non-working days),
  • earn an average of at least 118 per week, and
  • tell your employer you’re sick before their deadline - or within 7 days if they do not have one.

Each year more than 100,000 people leave their job following a period of sickness absence lasting at least 4 weeks, and the longer someone is on sickness absence the more likely they are to fall out of work, with 44% of people who had been off sick for a year leaving employment altogether.

Tax Diary August/September 2019

1 August 2019 - Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 31 October 2018.

19 August 2019 - PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 August 2019. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 August 2019)

19 August 2019 - Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly return for the month ended 5 August 2019.

19 August 2019 - CIS tax deducted for the month ended 5 August 2019 is payable by today.

1 September 2019 - Due date for Corporation Tax due for the year ended 30 November 2018.

19 September 2019 - PAYE and NIC deductions due for month ended 5 September 2019. (If you pay your tax electronically the due date is 22 September 2019)

19 September 2019 - Filing deadline for the CIS300 monthly return for the month ended 5 September 2019.

19 September 2019 - CIS tax deducted for the month ended 5 September 2019 is payable by today.




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