Section 383: Charge to tax on dividends and other distributions
1542.This section charges to tax dividends and other distributions from UK resident companies. It is based on Schedule F in section 20 of ICTA.
1543.The section charges to tax “dividends and other distributions”. The expression “distribution” is not defined in this Act except by reference to section 832(1) of ICTA (see the index of defined expressions in Part 2 of Schedule 4 to this Act).
1544.The main reason for not rewriting “distribution” in this Act is the importance of the expression in a corporation tax context (because, for example, distributions of companies resident in the United Kingdom are not taken into account in computing profits for corporation tax purposes - see section 208 of ICTA - and do not give rise to a tax deductible expense for the distributing company - see section 337A of ICTA). The expression therefore needs to be retained in a corporation tax context. Rewriting it in an income tax context would mean maintaining similar but not identical provisions for different purposes (some of the provisions - for example, section 209(5) to (7) of ICTA - are not relevant for income tax purposes). This is not thought to be straightforward or convenient for users of the legislation.
1545.Section 20(1) paragraph 1 of ICTA charges to tax all dividends and other distributions. But this is subject to section 95(1A)(a) of ICTA (taxation of dealers in respect of distributions). Section 95(1A)(a) of ICTA provides that tax is not charged under Schedule F where a dealer receives a “relevant distribution”. Instead, tax is charged under Schedule D Case I or II. Section 383 does not explicitly rewrite the proviso in section 20(1) of ICTA but the effect of the proviso is replicated by section 366(1) of this Act (which gives charging priority to Chapter 2 of Part 2 of this Act for income which is a receipt of a trade). So a distribution made by a UK resident company which is a receipt of a trade is charged to tax under Part 2 of this Act and not under this Chapter.
1546.The charge to tax under Schedule F in the source legislation is also subject to section 171(2) of FA 1993 (Lloyd’s underwriters: taxation of profits and allowance of losses) (see section 20(2) of ICTA). As with dealers, the tax charge in the source legislation is Schedule D Case I and not Schedule F. But section 171(2) of FA 1993 additionally provides that the amount of the profits arising from assets in an ancillary trust fund is calculated under the relevant Schedule or Case. Again, section 383 does not explicitly rewrite the proviso in section 20(2) of ICTA but the effect of that section is replicated by section 366(1) of this Act (which gives charging priority to Chapter 2 of Part 2 of this Act). And section 2(4) of this Act ensures that the calculation can be made under this Chapter.
1547.Subsections (2) and (3) confirm that the distribution is regarded as income for all income tax purposes even if it would otherwise be treated as capital (a capital dividend is a distribution – see section 209(2)(a) of ICTA).