Don't get caught out, watch out for the SDLT changes

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02 July, 2019

Are you aware of the important changes affecting Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT)?

When there is a reportable property transaction, there is a requirement to inform H M Revenue & Customs (HMRC) by submitting a Stamp Duty Land Tax Return Form (SDLT) and paying the necessary SDLT payment.

At present, the deadline to submit an SDLT return and make the necessary payment is 30 days from the effective date of the transaction (normally completion of the transfer of land or the date of completion of the lease).

Previously, the deadline to submit an SDLT return and make the necessary payment was 30 days from the effective date of the transaction (normally completion of the transfer of land or the date of completion of the lease). This has now been reduced to 14 days.

What is the purpose for this change?

According to the government website, this will have a beneficial impact on the efficiency of the SDLT system, as well as improvements to the SDLT return, which will require less information in respect of more complex purchases involving leases.

Who will it affect?

HMRC have estimated that this new change will affect approximately 20,000 businesses. This new procedure will unlikely have a direct impact on a buyer, but will primarily impact solicitors/conveyancers who will be dealing with their transaction and will be the one responsible for submitting your SDLT form and making the payment (unless, of course they are filing their own SDLT form, then they will need to be aware of these changes).

As a result of these changes, businesses and lawyers will need to ensure that their internal processes are updated to avoid late filings which will result in fines.

Implications

Failure to submit the SDLT form under the new 14 day deadline will mean an automatic fixed penalty of £100 or £200, depending on how long after you submit the SDLT form, plus interest on the unpaid amount.

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