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Finance Act 2012

Section 215: Disclosure of Stamp Duty Land Tax Avoidance Schemes


1.Section 215 amends section 308 of Finance Act (FA) 2004, inserting a new regulation-making power.  Section 308 of FA 2004 sets out the obligations of a promoter of a tax avoidance scheme to provide HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) with information about that scheme.  Regulations made under the new power may modify the way section 308 applies in relation to stamp duty land tax (SDLT) avoidance schemes.

Details of the Section

2.New section 308(6) gives HM Treasury the power to make regulations which modify the application of section 308 in circumstances to be described in the regulations.

Background Note

3.The SDLT Disclosure of Tax Avoidance Schemes (DOTAS) regime was extended from April 2010.  From that date, HMRC has been able to issue a scheme reference number (SRN) to promoters when they disclose a scheme.  The SRN has to be passed on to any users of the scheme who then in turn have to provide HMRC with the SRN, allowing HMRC to identify the users of the scheme.

4.However, SDLT avoidance schemes that were first disclosed before April 2010 were left out of the SRN regime by “grandfathering” rules.  The Government intends to remove these grandfathering rules for certain schemes so that they will fall within the SRN regime.  However, in order for this removal to be effective, section 308 of FA 2004 will have to modified in respect of those schemes so that they have to be disclosed by a promoter one further time.  The section gives HM Treasury the power to make regulations to make such modifications to the effect of section 308.

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