Finance Act 2019 comes into force

The Finance Bill 2018-19 received Royal Assent on 12 February 2019 and became Finance Act 2019.

The legislation brings forward a number of provisions that were announced in Budget 2017 and Budget 2018 including:

  • Clause 10: Exemption for expenses related to travel – this clause removes the requirement for employers to check receipts or other forms of documentary evidence of the amounts spent by employees when using the HMRC
    benchmark scale rates to pay or reimburse their employees’ qualifying subsistence expenses. This clause also makes necessary amendments to allow HMRC to introduce a statutory exemption for overseas scale rates, subject to the same checking requirements as benchmark scale rates.
  • Clause 11: Beneficiaries of tax-exempt employer-provided pension benefits – this clause will amend the tax exemption which provides for employer paid premiums into life assurance products and employer contributions to certain overseas pension schemes to be paid free of tax. Currently, premiums and contributions are only exempt from tax if the beneficiary is the employee or a member of the employee’s family or household. This clause will allow the beneficiary to be any individual or registered
  • Clause 16 and Schedule 4: Avoidance involving profit fragmentation arrangements – this measure introduces new anti-avoidance legislation to ensure that business profits cannot be taken out of the charge to UK tax by arranging for them to be attributed to offshore persons or entities. The new legislation has effect for value transferred on or after 6th April 2019 (income tax) or 1st April 2019 (corporation tax).
  • Clause 39: Gift Aid etc: restrictions on associated benefits – this clause simplifies the number of thresholds and changes the limits on the value of benefits that can be given to donors without affecting the Gift Aid qualifying status of a donation to a charity. The changes will apply in relation to gifts by individuals and payments by companies made to charities on or after 6 April 2019. You can read more about this change, which CTG helped to secure, here.
  • Clause 40: Charities: exemption for small trades etc – this clause increases the non-primary purpose small trading tax exemption limit for charities. The changes come into effect on or after 1 April 2019 for changes to the Corporation Tax Act and on or after 6 April 2019 for the Income Tax Act. You can read more about this change, which CTG also helped to secure, here.