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Finance Act 2014

Section 116: Temporary Statutory Effect of House of Commons Resolution

Summary

1.This section amends section 50 Finance Act 1973 (FA 1973) to ensure that, following the change to spring to spring parliamentary sessions, it will remain effective and continue to enable the Government to vary or abolish stamp duty on a provisional basis.

Details of the Section

2.Subsection 3 substitutes a new section 50(2)(d) FA 1973, which provides that a resolution can have statutory effect for a maximum period of seven months.

3.Subsection 4 inserts new sub-sections (2A) to (2D) to section 50 FA 1973.  The effect is that, if Parliament is prorogued at the end of a session, a resolution will cease to have statutory effect; unless proceedings on a Bill containing an equivalent provision, which have begun but have not been completed, are to be resumed in the next session, and re-introduced in the first thirty sitting days.

4.New sub-section (2A) provides that new sub-section (2B) will apply where Parliament is prorogued at the end of a session and lists at (a) to (c), the specific circumstances.

5.New sub-section (2B) allows a resolution to retain its statutory effect, provided a Bill containing equivalent provisions is presented to the House within the first thirty sitting days of the next session.

6.New sub-section (2C) defines ‘sitting day’.

7.New sub-section (2D) makes it clear that if a Bill has been amended as envisaged in new sub-section (2A)(a), it does not matter if an order to resume the proceedings in the next session, is made before the amendment.

Background Note

8.Section 50 FA 1973 provides temporary statutory effect to House of Commons resolutions for stamp duty. The principal practical application of this is to allow the Government to vary or abolish stamp duty on a provisional basis between the Budget and the enactment of the Finance Bill.

9.Under current legislation, such a resolution will fall if Parliament is prorogued. This became an issue when the Government moved to spring to spring parliamentary sessions, as it is now more likely that Parliament will be prorogued in May, between Budget Day and Royal Assent to the Finance Bill.

10.These changes will ensure that a resolution for stamp duty will remain effective until replaced by an Act of Parliament.  It will bring the provisions regarding resolutions for stamp duty into line with the changes made for other taxes in the Provisional Collection of Taxes Act 1968 by Finance Act 2011.

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