Charity tax statistics 2018-19

HMRC has published the charity tax statistics relating to the tax year 2018-19.

CTG Chairman John Hemming commented:

“The latest statistics show the continued importance of tax reliefs to charities, although it is important to remember that charities do still pay a lot of tax, including significant amounts of irrecoverable VAT.

“We are pleased to see that the amount of Gift Aid claimed by charities has increased by 7% after a 3 year plateau. Efforts to promote Gift Aid and improve donor understanding are ongoing and CTG is working closely with charities and digital experts to ensure that Gift Aid is future-proofed. The 33% increase in the amount of GASDS claimed is very welcome, but more can be done to maximise the awareness and uptake of this relief. Rates relief continues to be the most valuable relief for charities, but this comes against a backdrop of higher rates bills and an ongoing squeeze on discretionary reliefs. This will need to be monitored closely as the relief is vital for many charities to be able to deliver services and support their beneficiaries.

“It is disappointing that HMRC is no longer able to provide accurate estimates of the value of VAT reliefs for charities as this is very valuable information. However, CTG is undertaking a research project on the total VAT burden facing charities, including detailed analysis of the scale of reliefs and the total irrecoverable VAT burden. We would encourage charities to complete our forthcoming survey and support this initiative.”

 The statistics indicate that:

  • Total relief for charities and individuals is up £140m to £5.32bn
  • Total charity relief is up £110m to £3.79bn
  • Gift Aid claimed by charities is up £90m to £1.35bn
    • The £1.35bn of Gift Aid claimed came from eligible donations worth £5.41bn.
    • There were claims from 73,050 charities up by 850 on the previous year.
    • 160 charities claimed £1m+ Gift Aid (a total of £620m) & 51050 charities claimed <£5k (a total of £60m)
  • UK non-domestic rates relief is up £60m to £2.2bn (this includes mandatory and discretionary relief
  • GASDS is up £10m to £40m
  • SDLT relief is down £40m to £210m
  • Total relief for individuals is up £30m to £1.53bn
  • Inheritance Tax (IHT) relief for donors stays at £890m
  • Payroll giving stays at £40m
    • Just over a million people donated through payroll giving (up by a few thousand on the last year)
    • The gross amount donated was £132m, down by £5m on the previous year
  • Gifts of shares and property relief stays at £80m
  • Higher rate relief is up £30m to £520m

Corporation tax relief (MGETR/Orchestra Tax Relief/Theatre Tax Relief etc) statistics are published separately, as are Social Investment Tax Relief (SITR) figures.

The value of VAT reliefs are no longer published, but CTG is undertaking a detailed analysis of charities and the VAT system, including the scale of reliefs and the cost of irrecoverable VAT.

Summary of CTG’s VAT research project

For comparative purposes a review of the charity tax statistics in 2017-18 can be found here.