Tax Facts 2019-20

Welcome to the 2019-20 Spring Statement Tax Facts

This section of the website is prepared for guidance only. We recommend that you contact us for advice before acting on any information contained these website pages and we cannot accept responsibility for any action taken without such advice.

Personal Taxation

Main personal allowances

Personal income tax allowance (PA)£12,500£11,850
Marriage allowance (transferable)£1,250£1,190
Blind person's allowance£2,450£2,390
Rent-a-room relief£7,500£7,500
Trading Income£1,000£1,000
Property Income£1,000£1,000


  1. PA is reduced by £1 for every £2 by which Adjusted Net Income (ANI) exceeds £100,000, so PA is nil when ANI is £125,000 (2018/19 123,700).
  2. ANI is total taxable income, less qualifying pension contributions and Gift Aid donations.
  3. Marriage allowance is the transferable part of the PA and is available only to married couples and civil partners born after 5 April 1935. It can be transferred to their spouse or civil partner as long as the recipient is not a higher or top rate taxpayer.
  4. The rent-a-room exemption is available where the taxpayer lets out part of the home they live in as furnished residential accommodation.
  5. Where rent-a-room, trading or property income exceed the relevant limit above, that limit (rather than expenses) may be deducted from gross income.

Income tax bands

Savings rate band£5,000£5,000
Basic rate band (BRB)£37,500£34,500
Higher rate band (HRB)£37,501-£150,000£34,501-£150,000
Additional rateover £150,000over £150,000
Personal Savings Allowance (PSA)
– Basic rate taxpayer£1,000£1,000
– Higher rate taxpayer£500£500
Dividend allowance£2,000£5,000


  1. The BRB (Scotland: intermediate rate band) and additional rate threshold are extended by the grossed-up equivalent of personal pension contributions and Gift Aid donations paid by the taxpayer in the tax year, or treated as paid in the tax year.
  2. Taxable income usually uses up the rate bands in the following order:
    • G 'general income' (employment, pensions, business profits, rent)
    • S 'savings income' (mainly interest)
    • D 'dividends' (distributions from companies/most unit trusts)
  3. The savings rate band is part of the basic rate band, meaning that to the extent that savings income falls in the first £5,000 of the basic rate band, it is taxed at nil rather than 20%.
  4. Different bands and rates apply to general income in Scotland (see below).

Income tax rates

 2019/20 & 2018/19
Rates differ for:GSD
Basic rate20%20%7.5%
Higher rate40%40%32.5%
Additional rate45%45%38.1%


  1. The PSA taxes interest at nil, where it would otherwise be taxable at 20% or 40%. It is not available to a top rate taxpayer.
  2. Dividends are usually taxed as the 'top slice' of income. The Dividend Allowance taxes the first £2,000 of dividend income at nil rather than the rate that would otherwise apply.

Income tax bands and rates - Scotland

Starter Rate19%£2,049£2,000
Basic Rate20%£2,050 – £12,444£2,001 – £12,150
Intermediate Rate21%£12,445 – £30,930£12,151 – £31,580
Higher Rate41%£30,931 – £150,000£31,581 – £150,000
Top Rate46%£150,000£150,000


  1. The Scottish rates and bands do not apply for savings and dividend income, which are taxed at normal UK rates.

Remittance basis charge

Resident in the UK for2019/202018/19
7 of the preceding 9 tax years£30,000£30,000
12 of the preceding 14 tax years£60,000£60,000
15 of the preceding 20 tax yearsDeemed to be UK domiciled


  1. The remittance basis charge (RBC) is payable by non-UK domiciled individuals who claim the remittance basis and who have been resident in the UK for the periods shown.

Residential landlords

Proportion of finance costs allowable against letting income25%50%


  1. Finance costs comprise mainly interest, but includes related matters such as arrangement fees.
  2. A tax reducer at 20% of the disallowed finance costs is available to reduce the landlord’s income tax liability, but is subject to certain restrictions.
  3. The phasing out of deductible finance costs will continue through to 2020/21, when only basic rate relief as a tax reducer will be available.
  4. These rules do not affect qualifying furnished holiday lets, commercial property or corporate landlords.

High Income Child Benefit charge (HICBC)

Lower threshold£50,000£50,000
Upper threshold£60,000£60,000


  1. Only applicable to families who receive child benefit, where adjusted net income of highest earner is above lower threshold.
  2. HICBC is equivalent to 1% of child benefit received by the family, for every £100 of adjusted net income over lower threshold.
  3. Highest earner in family must declare child benefit received by them or their partner on their tax return.
  4. The recipient of child benefit can elect not to receive it in order to avoid the HICBC, without losing their right to accrue certain state benefits. Child benefit payments can subsequently be recommenced if the claimant chooses.


Registered pensions

Lifetime Allowance (LA)£1,055,000£1,030,000
Annual Allowance (AA) - maximum£40,000£40,000
Annual Allowance - minimum£10,000£10,000
Money Purchase Annual Allowance (MPAA)£4,000£4,000


  1. Contributions to registered personal pension schemes are paid net of basic rate tax. The policyholder pays 80% and HMRC pay 20%.
  2. Tax relief at the taxpayer’s marginal income tax rate is given on pension contributions up to 100% of earnings, capped by the AA.
  3. Those with little or no UK relevant earnings can make pension contributions up to £3,600 gross (£2,880 net) per year.
  4. AA can be increased by unused allowance brought forward from the previous three tax years.
  5. AA is usually tapered down by £1 for every £2 of adjusted income over £150,000, to a minimum of £10,000.
  6. Annual allowance charge is levied at the individual’s marginal rate for pension inputs exceeding the annual allowance.
  7. Employers can contribute to the employee’s pension fund up to the AA per year, less any contributions made by the individual. Employer will enjoy tax relief on those contributions under the normal rules for business expenses.
  8. Investors in personal and other defined contribution pension schemes can access all of their pension savings once they reach age 55.
  9. When the investor takes benefits from such pension schemes under flexi-access drawdown, up to 25% of the accumulated fund can be drawn as a tax-free lump sum. The balance is taxed at the investor’s marginal rate of tax that applies in the year those benefits are drawn.
  10. LA is measured against the capital value of the pension benefits at the time they are first taken.
  11. LA charge is 55% if funds exceeding the LA are taken as a lump sum, or 25% if the benefits are taken as income.
  12. MPAA replaces AA where taxpayer has started to take taxable income from a defined contribution scheme. There is no carry forward of unused MPAA.

State pension

Maximum amount per week2019/202018/19
Old state pension – Single person£129.20£125.95
Old state pension – Married couple£206.65£201.45
New state pension£168.60£164.35


  1. An individual is eligible to draw the state retirement pension when he or she reaches State Pension Age (SPA). From 2019, the State Pension age will increase for both men and women, reaching 66 by October 2020. Thereafter, it will gradually increase to 68.
  2. Individuals who reach SPA on or after 6 April 2016 receive the new state pension, which replaced the old state pension, the second state pension and pension credit.
  3. An individual who qualifies for the state pension may choose to defer claiming it. Any deferred pension will be paid at a higher rate than the normal pension.
  4. The state pension is taxable.

Investment reliefs

Annual investment limits2019/202018/19
Individual Savings Account (ISA)
– Overall limit£20,000£20,000
– Lifetime ISA (LISA)£4,000£4,000
Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS)£2,000,000£1,000,000
Seed EIS (SEIS)£100,000£100,000
Venture Capital Trust (VCT)£200,000£200,000
Social Investment Tax Relief (SITR)£1,000,000£1,000,000


  1. ISA investors can invest in any combination of cash or shares, up to the overall limits shown. The £4,000 LISA limit is part of the general ISA limit of £20,000, not additional to it.
  2. Taxpayers aged between 18 and 40 may open a LISA and invest up to £4,000 each year, which qualifies for a 25% Government bonus on amounts invested up to the age of 50.
  3. This benefit is retained as long as the money is either
    • put towards a first home costing up to £450,000, or
    • kept in the account until reaching age 60, or
    • withdrawn after being diagnosed with a terminal illness.
  4. If the money in a LISA is withdrawn in other circumstances, the bonus will be clawed back with an additional 5% charge.
  5. Junior ISA, with an investment limit of £4,368 (2018/19: £4,260), is available to those aged under 18 and who don’t have a Child Trust Fund account. At age 18, their junior ISA becomes an adult ISA.
  6. Amounts invested above £1m in the EIS must be in 'knowledgeintensive' companies.
  7. EIS, VCT and SITR investments attract 30% Income Tax relief, but those schemes all have different qualifying rules.
  8. SEIS investments attract 50% Income Tax relief.
  9. Where the disposal proceeds from any capital gain are reinvested under EIS or SITR in the four-year period that starts one year before the date of the gain, all or part of the original gain can be deferred.
  10. Gains reinvested under SEIS, within the same tax year, up to the investment limit attract 50% exemption from CGT.
  11. Investments made under EIS, SEIS and SITR can be carried back to be treated as made in the previous tax year, subject to the investment limits.
  12. Disposals of investments acquired under EIS, SEIS, SITR or VCT are exempt from CGT if investment conditions have not been broken.

National Insurance Contributions (NIC)

Class 1 NIC thresholds 2019/20

Lower Earnings Limit (LEL)£118£512£6,136
Primary Threshold (PT)£166£719£8,632
Secondary Threshold (ST)£166£719£8,632
Upper Secondary Threshold (UST)£962£4,167£50,000
Upper Earnings Limit (UEL)£962£4,167£50,000


  1. No NIC are payable by employee or employer on earnings up to the PT (employees) or ST (employer).
  2. No employee NIC are payable once the employee reaches state retirement age, but employer NIC continue to be payable.
  3. No employer NIC are payable on earnings up to the UST for employees aged under 21, or apprentices aged under 25, at the date of the payment.
  4. No employee NIC are payable on earnings between the LEL and the PT, but when reported by the employer, the employee receives credit towards the State Pension.

Class 1 NIC rates 2019/20

PT/ST to UEL12%13.8%
Above the UEL2%13.8%


  1. Employers and employees both contribute at rates dependent on the level of earnings during a weekly, monthly or annual earnings period.
  2. A person with more than one employment can defer the payment of some employee NIC until after the end of the tax year. The total amount payable is then checked and limited, so the full 12% rate is only applied to income between the PT and the UEL.
  3. An 'employment allowance' of £3,000 per qualifying business gives exemption from Class 1 Employer NIC. Some businesses are excluded, including certain sole director companies. Employee NIC are unaffected.

Class 2 NIC

Rates per week2019/202018/19
Flat rate£3£2.95
Small Profits Threshold (SPT)£6,365£6,205


Self employed people pay Class 2 NIC if their profits exceed the SPT for the tax year and can pay voluntarily if profits are below that level.

Class 3 NIC

Rates per week2019/202018/19
Class 3 flat rate£15£14.65


Anyone who wants to maintain State Pension rights may pay voluntary Class 3 NIC.

Class 4 NIC

Lower profits limit (LPL)£8,632£8,424
Upper profits limit (UPL)£50,000£45,350
LPL to UPL9.0%9.0%
Above UPL2.0%2.0%


  1. Class 4 NIC are payable on profits from UK trades or professions that exceed the lower profits limit and are chargeable to Income Tax.
  2. Both Class 2 and Class 4 NIC are collected through self assessment.
  3. An individual who is both employed and self employed may pay Class 1, Class 2 and Class 4 NIC, subject to the maximum limit for the year.

Employee Benefits

Car benefit 2019/20

 Percentage of chargeable value
CO2 emissions (g/km)PetrolDiesel
Above 94Add 1% for every 5g/km
Above 164 (petrol)/ 144 (diesel)37% maximum


  1. Where the car is provided by the employer, the employee is taxed on the 'cash equivalent', calculated as a percentage (based on its CO2 emissions) of the vehicle’s chargeable value.
  2. The chargeable value is the vehicle’s list price when new plus the cost of most accessories added, less any capital contribution of up to £5,000 from the employee.
  3. The employer must also pay Class 1A NIC at 13.8% on the cash equivalent amount of the benefit.
  4. The percentages for petrol cars apply to diesel cars that meet the RDE2 standard.

Car fuel benefit

Benefit multiplier£24,100£23,400


  1. Where fuel is provided by the employer for private use in a company car, the percentage used to calculate the car benefit is applied to the benefit multiplier in order to determine the taxable benefit.
  2. The benefit is charged without reduction for contributions by the employee, unless all private fuel is paid for (in which case there is no benefit). This must be done by 6 July following the end of the tax year, unless the fuel benefit is "payrolled", in which case the deadline is 1 June following the end of the tax year.
  3. Where the employer provides the car and the employee provides the fuel, HMRC’s advisory fuel mileage rates can be used to reimburse the cost of fuel used on business journeys. Those rates are updated each quarter and published at

Van benefits

Ordinary van£3,430£3,350
Zero emissions van£2,058£1,340
Fuel benefit£655£633


If the private use of a van is restricted to home-to-work travel, there is no tax charge, unlike for company cars.

Employment-related loans

Official interest rate2.5%2.5%


  1. Where the total amount loaned to the employee exceeds £10,000 at any point in the tax year, the cash equivalent benefit is the excess of the official rate over any interest actually paid by the employee to the employer (provided there is a contractual agreement to pay that interest).
  2. Loans from a close company to directors or shareholders of the company may also generate a tax charge for the company.

Tax-free mileage allowances

Employee's own transportper business mile
Cars, first 10,000 miles45p
Cars, over 10,000 miles25p
Business passengers5p


  1. Passenger must be completing the same business journey.
  2. For all except the business passengers allowance, if the employer does not pay the full mileage rate, the employee can claim tax relief on any shortfall from HMRC.

Childcare vouchers and Tax-free Childcare (TFC)

Childcare vouchers - Weekly exempt amount

Basic rate taxpayer£55£55
Higher rate taxpayer£28£28
Additional rate taxpayer£25£25


  1. The employer-provided childcare voucher scheme closed to new entrants on 5 October 2018.
  2. Employees who joined the scheme before 6 April 2011, and are still employed by that employer, continue to receive a benefit of £55 per week, whatever their marginal rate of tax.
  3. Tax-free Childcare (TFC) accounts are now available to all eligible parents. You cannot use TFC if you are receiving childcare vouchers.
  4. Under TFC, where both parents work and earn a specified minimum income (but neither earns more than £100,000 per year), they are able to put up to £8,000 a year per child into an account, which the Government will top up with 25p for every £1 contributed by the parents.
  5. A TFC account can be used to pay for childcare for a child aged 11 and under, except for disabled children, where the limits are doubled and contributions can continue up to the age of 17.
  6. Unlike the voucher scheme, TFC is available to the self employed.

Employee share schemes

Type of share schemeTax advantages
Share Incentive Plan (SIP)
Free shares worth up to £3,600pa. Employee can buy up to £1,800pa out of pre-tax pay. Employer can match bought shares with up to two more.If shares left in the scheme for at least five years: no Income Tax or CGT on the value when they leave the scheme. Gains on disposal are subject to CGT.
Enterprise Management Incentive (EMI)
Trading companies with fewer than 250 employees and assets up to £30m can grant options to selected employees to buy up to £250,000 worth of shares.No Income Tax or NIC if option is exercised within ten years of option grant. Shares qualify for 10% rate of CGT on disposal if grant is at least two years before disposal.
Company Share Option Plan (CSOP)
Share options to buy up to £30,000 of shares can be granted to employees.No Income Tax or NIC if option is exercised between three and ten years of grant. Gains on disposal are subject to CGT.
Save As You Earn (SAYE)
Employees contribute up to £500 a month to a savings scheme, and use money to exercise share options.No Income Tax or NIC if option is exercised three years or more after the grant of option. Gains on disposal are subject to CGT.


  1. Generally, employees are charged to Income Tax on the value of shares that they are given or are issued to them by their employer, less any amount paid for the shares. NIC are also charged if the company is quoted, or the shares can be easily sold. If the employer operates one of the above tax-advantage schemes, the tax charges may be eliminated, reduced or deferred.
  2. The employer must register the share scheme with HMRC, using the online Employment Related Securities (ERS) system, by 6 July following the end of the tax year in which the scheme is implemented.
  3. Employers must file an annual return for each share scheme online through ERS by 6 July each year.
  4. The above is a very brief summary of the main tax advantaged share schemes; other conditions apply.

Main exempt benefits

Benefit itemLimit of exemption
Mobile phoneOne per employee
Subsidised mealsFor all employees in a staff canteen
Works busesMust be used only or substantially by employees or their children
Pension contributionsAnnual allowance (see Investment Reliefs)
Personal incidental expenses when staying away from home£5 per night, £10 if abroad
Qualifying relocation expenses£8,000 per employee per move


Many employee benefits are not charged to tax; the principal ones are listed above.

Capital Gains Tax

Annual Exempt Amount (AEA)

Individuals and deceased estates£12,000£11,700
Most trusts£6,000£5,850


  1. Each individual is entitled to an AEA, but that exemption may be denied if they claim the remittance basis (see Personal Taxation).
  2. The AEA cannot be transferred, nor carried forward or back to another tax year.

Tax rate

 2019/20 & 2018/19
 Residential propertyOther
Individual - to limit of basic rate band18%10%
Individual - above basic rate band28%20%
Trusts and deceased estates28%20%


  1. CGT is payable on capital gains made in the tax year, after deduction of capital losses, available reliefs and the annual exemption.
  2. Receipts of carried interest by venture capital investors are taxed at the same rates as residential property.
  3. When a chargeable asset is given away, the donor is treated as receiving the full market value and is liable for CGT accordingly.
  4. There is no charge on disposals between spouses or registered civil partners who are living together. On such disposals, the transferee takes over the transferor’s CGT cost.
  5. There is no CGT on gains accrued to the date of a taxpayer’s death.

Entrepreneurs' Relief (ER)

Lifetime limit£10m£10m
CGT on qualifying disposals10%10%


  1. Disposals made by an individual or certain trustees can qualify for ER.
  2. The asset disposed of must have been owned for at least two years and be one of:
    • a business or an interest in a business
    • business assets sold within three years of the business ceasing
    • shares in a trading company, of which the individual is an officer or employee and either holds at least 5% of the ordinary share capital or acquired the shares under an EMI scheme; other detailed conditions apply
    • assets used by the shareholder’s personal company or partnership and sold at around the same time as 5% or more of either the company's shares or the partnership interest.

Investors' relief

Lifetime limit£10m£10m


  1. This relief gives a 10% CGT rate to certain investors in qualifying unquoted trading companies.
  2. Investors cannot be a paid director or employee of the company (but can become an employee 6 months or more after acquiring the shares) and must hold newly issued shares (acquired on/after 17 March 2016) for a minimum period of 3 years beginning on/after 6 April 2016. Thus the earliest date on which a qualifying disposal can be made is 6 April 2019.

Other CGT reliefs

Taxpayer's only or main homeGain is exempt for the periods the taxpayer lives there, or is deemed to live there, plus the last 18 months of ownership.
Chattels (tangible movable property)If bought and sold for less than £6,000.
Gifts to charityNot charged to CGT, and gifts of quoted shares and land also enjoy an income tax relief.
Assets which become of negligible valueDeemed to be sold at nil, to create loss, when an election is made.

Corporation Tax (CT)

Rates from1.4.20191.4.2018
Corporation Tax rate19%19%


  1. Most companies must pay their Corporation Tax within nine months and a day after the end of the accounting period.
  2. Large companies or groups generally make four quarterly payments on account of Corporation Tax, starting in either the third or seventh month after the start of a 12-month accounting period, depending on level of profits. Interest runs on any underpayments until final settlement of the period’s liability.
  3. All companies must file Corporation Tax returns online within 12 months after the end of the accounting period.

Research and Development

SME enhanced deduction130%
Large company above the line credit (RDEC)12%


  1. The above enhanced deduction is for qualifying revenue expenditure on qualifying R&D projects; various conditions apply to both terms.
  2. Where an SME makes a loss it can surrender that loss for a payable tax credit worth 14.5% of the loss.
  3. RDEC is a taxable expenditure credit for qualifying R&D.

Special reliefs

Intangible assets: goodwill, know-how and patent rightsDeduction given according to depreciation in the accounts, unless the circumstances in Note 1 - 3 below apply.
Patent income10% rate of CT.
Creative industries producing: films, high-end or children's TV programmes, video games or theatre productionsEnhanced deductions for certain expenditure and losses surrendered for payable tax credits.


  1. No deduction for goodwill arising on incorporations from 3.12.14.
  2. No deduction for other purchased goodwill acquired from 8.7.15 to 5.4.19.
  3. Deduction at 6.5% pa for purchased goodwill and certain customerrelated intangibles from 6.4.19, but qualifying amount limited to 6 x qualifying intellectual property purchased at the same time.
  4. The above is a brief summary of selected reliefs available to companies; other conditions apply in each case.

Business Tax

Cash basis

Entry threshold – turnover up to:£150,000£150,000
Exit threshold – turnover not more than:£300,000£300,000


  1. Unincorporated trading businesses with annual turnover within the above limits can choose to calculate taxable profits on the 'cash basis' – income received and expenditure paid, rather than invoiced or accrued.
  2. Deduction for loan interest is limited to £500 per year.
  3. Losses can only be carried forward.
  4. Certain businesses are not permitted to use the cash basis, including: farmers using the herd basis, persons using profit averaging, and LLPs.
  5. Unincorporated property businesses can use the cash basis from 6 April 2017. The key differences to the rules for trading businesses are:
    • the entry and exit thresholds are both £150,000;
    • cash basis is the default position for such businesses, but they can elect to use accrual accounting;
    • there is no £500 restriction on interest costs

Flat rate deductions

Item used for businessPermitted deduction
Taxpayer's car or goods vehicleUp to 10,000 miles pa45p/mile
 Over 10,000 miles pa25p/mile
Taxpayer's home (use per month)25 - 50 hours£10/month
 51 - 100 hours£18/month
 101 hours or more£26/month
Business premises partly used as home (e.g. public house or B&B)Private use adjustment
 1 occupant£350/month
 2 occupants£500/month
 3 occupants£650/month


  1. Unincorporated businesses can choose the above fixed rate deductions to use instead of calculating the business proportion of actual expenditure.
  2. Use of home deduction covers power, internet, telephone, but not council tax or mortgage interest.
  3. Use of vehicle does not cover finance element of lease or hire purchase costs for vehicle.
  4. Use of business premises amounts are deducted from the actual expenses of running the building so that the personal costs of resident business owners are excluded.

Capital allowances

Plant and machinery allowances

Annual Investment Allowance (AIA)
– expenditure 1.1.19 - 31.12.20£1,000,000100%
– expenditure pre 1.1.19£200,000100%
Energy/water-efficient equipment100%
Writing down allowance – general pool (reducing balance)18%
Writing down allowance – special rate pool (reducing balance)6%


  1. Neither capital expenditure nor depreciation is generally allowed as an expense.
  2. The writing down allowance (WDA) spreads the cost over several years, and is not related to the accounting depreciation.
  3. Special rate pool includes long life assets, plant integral to buildings and thermal insulation. The WDA on this pool was 8% pa prior to 1 April 2019 (companies) and 6 April 2019 (unincorporated businesses and LLPs). A time-apportioned rate of WDA is calculated for accounting periods straddling the change date.

Motor cars purchased

From 1.4.18Allowance
CO2 (g/km)
New cars onlyUp to 50100%
In general poolUp to 11018% pa
In special rate poolabove 1106% pa


  1. The WDA on the special rate pool was 8% pa prior to 1 April 2019 (companies) and 6 April 2019 (unincorporated businesses and LLPs).
  2. Unincorporated businesses: the allowance is reduced for private use of the car.

Structures and buildings allowances (SBA)

Expenditure from 29.10.18 (straight line basis)2%


The SBA is available on commercial buildings and structures used for a qualifying purpose. It is not available on residences, nor on the cost of land itself.

Property Taxes

Annual Tax on Enveloped Dwellings (ATED)

Property valueAnnual charge to
£0.5m – £1m£3,650£3,600
£1m – £2m£7,400£7,250
£2m – £5m£24,800£24,250
£5m – £10m£57,900£56,550
£10m – £20m£116,100£113,400
Over £20m£232,350£226,950


  1. The ATED applies to 'high value' residential properties owned via a corporate structure, unless the property is used for a qualifying purpose.
  2. There are many reliefs that can remove or reduce the charge, but in order to claim a relief, a Relief Declaration Return must be submitted.
  3. The ATED return and tax due must generally reach HMRC by 30 April within the relevant year.

Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT)

Residential property

Purchase priceRate on band
Up to £125,000Nil
£125,001 - £250,0002%
£250,001 - £925,0005%
£925,001 - £1.5m10%
Over £1.5m12%


  1. A supplement of 3% of the total purchase price applies where someone owning one or more residences acquires an additional residence for more than £40,000, unless they are replacing their main residence. It also applies to all corporate purchasers. A supplement also applies to LBTT and LTT (see below) at, respectively, 4% and 3% of total purchase price.
  2. First-time buyers purchasing a property for up to £500,000 pay SDLT at a nil rate on the first £300,000 of the price.
  3. Where purchaser is a company (or partnership including a corporate member) and price is over £500,000, SDLT is 15% of total purchase price, if exemptions or reliefs do not apply.
  4. New leases with a net present value of rents exceeding £125,000 attract SDLT of 1% of that excess.

Commercial property

Purchase price for freeholdRate on band
Up to £150,000Nil
Between £150,001 and £250,0002%
Over £250,0005%

Net present value of rent for leaseRate on band
Up to £150,000Nil
Between £150,001 and £5m1%
Over £5m2%

Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT) - Scotland

Residential property

Purchase priceRate on band
Up to £145,000Nil
£145,001 - £250,0002%
£250,001 - £325,0005%
£325,001 - £750,00010%
Over £750,00012%


For first-time buyers, the nil band is to be extended to £175,000.

Commercial property

Purchase priceRate on band
Up to £150,000Nil
£150,001 - £250,0001%
Over £250,0005%


  1. The above rates of LBTT also apply to any lease premium on commercial properties.
  2. Leases with an NPV of rents exceeding £150,000 attract LBTT of 1%.

Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LTT) - Wales

Residential property

Purchase priceRate on band
Up to £180,000Nil
£180,001 - £250,0003.5%
£250,001 - £400,0005%
£400,001 - £750,0007.5%
£750,001 - £1.5m10%
Over £1.5m12%

Commercial property

Purchase price for freeholdRate on band
Up to £150,000Nil
£150,001 - £250,0001%
£250,001 - £1m5%
Above £1m6%

Net present value of rent for leaseRate on band
Up to £150,000Nil
Between £150,001 and £2m1%
Over £2m2%

Value Added Tax

VAT rates

 VAT rateVAT fraction
Standard rate20%1/6
Lower or reduced rate5%1/21
Zero rate0%-


  1. Lower rate applies to a small range of supplies, including domestic fuel and power and some conversions of residential property.
  2. Zero rate applies to a range of supplies, including some types of food, hard-copy books and newspapers (not electronic), new houses and children's clothes. VAT is charged at a zero rate to the customer, but the supplier can recover VAT on costs.
  3. Exempt supplies include many land-related supplies, insurance, finance, education, health and welfare, and non-profit sports clubs. No VAT is charged to the customer, but the supplier can’t recover VAT on costs.

VAT thresholds

 From 1.4.2019From 1.4.2018
Registration – turnover for last 12 months£85,000£85,000
Deregistration – turnover next 12 months£83,000£83,000


  1. An unregistered business must register for VAT if it has made taxable supplies that equal or exceed the registration threshold in the last 12 months, up to any month-end, or if it expects to exceed that threshold in the next 30 days alone. Taxable supplies include reduced rate and zero-rated sales.
  2. A VAT-registered business can apply to deregister if it can satisfy HMRC that taxable supplies in the next year will not exceed the deregistration threshold.
  3. From 1 April 2019, the vast majority of businesses above the compulsory registration threshold must comply with the Making Tax Digital (MTD) provisions. These mean that businesses will have to keep their records digitally for VAT and provide VAT return information through MTD functional compatible software.
  4. Most VAT returns are prepared for three-month periods, and must be filed electronically within seven days of the end of the month following the return period.
  5. Payment of VAT must be made electronically, and must be received by HMRC by the same deadline as the return or be paid by direct debit.
  6. From 1 October 2019, a construction industry business making a supply to another such business will not usually charge output tax. Instead, the customer will account for the output tax itself through the reverse charge mechanism.
  7. If you supply automated digital or broadcasting services to non-business customers in other EU countries, you may need to be registered for and charge VAT in the other country.

Small business schemes

Annual turnoverJoiningLeaving
Flat-rate scheme (FRS)£150,000£230,000
Annual accounting£1,350,000£1,600,000
Cash accounting£1,350,000£1,600,000


  1. When using FRS, the VAT paid to HMRC by the business is a fixed percentage (based on business category) of ‘FRS turnover’ rather than the net of output tax over input tax.
  2. Businesses in first year of VAT registration are entitled to a 1% discount on the normal FRS percentage for their business category.
  3. Under FRS, input VAT is not recoverable, unless it relates to the purchase of a capital asset costing £2,000 or more (including VAT).
  4. Under annual accounting, the business files a single VAT return each year instead of one every three months.
  5. When using the cash accounting scheme, the business only pays VAT to HMRC when its customers have paid the business, but it can only recover VAT on expenses actually paid for, rather than accrued.

Inheritance Tax (IHT)

Rates and thresholds2019/202018/19
Nil Rate Band (NRB)£325,000£325,000
Residential enhancement (RNRB)£150,000£125,000
Tax paid on legacies on death40%40%
Tax paid if at least 10% of net estate
is left to charity on death
Gifts made up to seven years before
death (see lifetime gifts)
Chargeable lifetime transfers to trusts20%20%


  1. RNRB is available for transfers of a main residence (or assets of an equivalent value if the main residence has been sold) to direct descendents. It tapers away at the rate of £1 for every £2 of estate value above £2m
  2. Up to 100% of the proportion of a deceased spouse’s/civil partner’s unused NRB and RNRB may be claimed to increment the current NRB and RNRB when the survivor dies.
  3. Gifts or legacies to charities are not charged to IHT.
  4. IHT due on a deceased’s estate and on gifts within seven years of death is generally due six months after the month of death, but in practice it must be paid before probate is granted.
  5. If the donor pays the IHT due on a chargeable lifetime transfer to a trust, the effective rate is 25%.
  6. IHT on chargeable lifetime transfers to trusts is payable within 6 months from the end of the month of transfer

Lifetime gifts

Reduced tax charge on gifts up to seven years before death
Years before death0-33-44-55-66-7
Percentage of IHT
death charge payable


Lifetime gifts between individuals ('potentially exempt transfers') are only charged to IHT if the donor dies within seven years of the gift.

Exempt gifts

Amount of reliefConditions
£3,000 paAmount per donor; unused exemption can can be carried forward one year
£250 paDe minimis amount per recipient
UnlimitedRegular gifts out of surplus income
UnlimitedTo UK domiciled spouse or civil partner
£325,000To non-domiciled spouse/civil partner
£5,000From parent of party to marriage (see note)
£2,500From a grandparent (or remoter ancestor) of a party to a marriage, or from one party of a marriage to the other (see note)
£1,000From any other person to a party to a marriage (see note)


Exemptions for gifts on marriage apply also to civil partnerships.

Business and agricultural property

Amount of reliefProperty and conditions
100%All shareholdings in unquoted trading companies; an unincorporated business or interest in such a business
50%Controlling shareholding in quoted company; land and buildings used by either a trading company controlled by the owner, or a partnership where he is a partner
100%Agricultural value of qualifying farmland and buildings


In all cases the property must have been owned for at least two years; and other conditions apply.


Tax rates2019/20
Type of trustLife interestDiscretionary
Rate on dividend income7.5%38.1%
Rate on other income20%45%
CGT rate on residential property28%28%
CGT rate on other gains20%20%
CGT annual exemption£6,000£6,000


  1. Trustees are liable to Income Tax on the trust income, CGT on the trust gains and, in some circumstances, IHT.
  2. Discretionary trusts pay tax at 7.5% or 20% on income used to pay trust expenses and on another £1,000 of income, before paying at the main rates (38.1% or 45%).
  3. Discretionary trusts for vulnerable beneficiaries (such as disabled people) may reduce their effective tax rates if an election is made.
  4. The CGT annual exempt amount (£6,000) is divided between trusts established by the same settlor since 6.6.1978, to a minimum of £1,200.
  5. Trustees are liable to pay IHT in a variety of circumstances; appropriate professional advice is essential.
  6. Beneficiaries of life interest trusts (‘liferent’ trusts in Scotland) are treated as entitled to the income of the trustees, and pay tax on it in the year it arises to the trust, with a credit for tax paid by the trustees.
  7. Beneficiaries of discretionary trusts pay tax on income distributed to them by the trustees, which is treated as paid with a tax credit of 9/11 of the cash received (i.e. a £45 tax credit for every £55 of income distributed).

Key deadlines

Payment deadlines

Self assessment2019/202018/19
1st payment on account31 January20202019
2nd payment on account31 July20202019
Balancing payment31 January20212020
Capital Gains Tax31 January20212020
National Insurance
Class 1A NIC19 July20202019
Class 1B NIC19 October20202019


  1. Payments on account for 2019/20 are based on 2018/19 self assessed Income Tax, Class 2 NIC and Class 4 NIC.
  2. Non-residents with gains on UK residential property must pay CGT within 30 days of disposal, unless already filing a self assessment tax return.
  3. Missing any payment dates leads to interest being charged at 3%.
  4. Missing the balancing payment date by 30 days will lead to a 5% penalty.
  5. When the balancing payment is six and12 months late, further 5% penalties apply on each occasion.
  6. Employment income is charged to both Income Tax and to Class 1 NIC.
  7. Tax and NIC are normally paid by the employer through the PAYE system, under which the PAYE code makes adjustments for tax reliefs due and some tax due on other income.
  8. Where a payment date is the 19th of the month, any cheque must reach HMRC by that date, or the business day preceding it (if the 19th falls on a week-end or Bank Holiday). Online payments can reach HMRC by 22nd of the month without incurring interest.
  9. An employee who has overpaid or underpaid tax at the end of the year will normally receive a tax calculation from HMRC on form P800 and shortly afterwards receive a tax repayment, or be asked to pay any tax due.
  10. If the tax underpaid is no more than £3,000, the underpayment can be settled through PAYE in the following tax year.

Filing deadlines

For tax year2018/19
Issue P60s to employees31 May 2019
P11D and P11D(b)6 July 2019
Paper version of self-assessment return31 October 2019
Online self-assessment return31 January 2020


  1. Where taxpayers submit the 2018/19 self assessment tax return by 30 December 2019, they can request that underpaid tax, within limits, is collected through PAYE code in the following tax year.
  2. A late filing penalty of £100 will be issued if the self assessment return is not submitted within the deadlines indicated above. This applies even if no tax is due.
  3. Further late filing penalties are due if the self assessment return is more than three, six and 12 months late.

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