Stamp Taxes

There are now four (shortly to be five) separate taxes owing their origins to stamp duty, which is the oldest extant tax (it dates from 1694), whereas up to 1986, there had only been one, previously imposed on transfers of land, shares and securities, and other transfers, namely:

  • SDLT (and in Scotland from 1 April 2015, LBTT (land and buildings transaction tax) and in Wales from 1 April 2018, LTT (land transactions tax) on transactions involving land and buildings;
  • Stamp duty on documents transferring shares and marketable securities, the issue of bearer instruments and transfers of interests in partnerships. Stamp duty may also apply to a very narrow range of land transactions.
  • Stamp duty reserve tax (SDRT) on ‘paperless’ transactions in chargeable securities. There is some considerable interaction between SDRT and stamp duty.

SDLT is within the DOTAS (Disclosure of Tax Avoidance Schemes) legislation and is also included in the GAAR (General Anti-Abuse Rule) legislation in Finance Act 2013, effective from 17 July 2013, whereas SDRT is within DOTAS but not the GAAR and stamp duty is within neither regime.

Stamp taxes is a very complex area where expert advice is required.  The consequences of structuring a transaction incorrectly can be expensive.

For further information please download our e-brochure. Or to arrange a free introductory meeting, please contact us on +44 20 7129 1432

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