SDLT filing and payment date changes
In last year’s autumn statement, George Osborne announced plans to change the Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) filing and payment process. SDLT is a tax that is generally payable on the purchase or transfer of land and property in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. In Scotland, SDLT was replaced by Land and Buildings Transaction Tax from 1 April 2015. In Wales, SDLT will be replaced by Land Transaction Tax from April 2018.
The changes, if written into legislation, will see the time given to make an SDLT filing and payment reduced from 30 days to 14 days. A new consultation document was published earlier this month and provides more information on the proposed changes. The consultation is open for comment until 7 October 2016. The new measure is expected to come into effect between 1 January 2018 and 1 March 2018.
As part of HMRC’s plans to modernise the SDLT filing and payment process the consultation is seeking views on making online filing for agents mandatory. At present, the vast majority of returns are submitted online but HMRC still received over 31,000 paper returns each year which are far more cumbersome to process. There would be exceptions for those that cannot file online due to religious belief or other extenuating circumstances. The proposals also include the introduction of an upgraded system that will allow for online filing and electronic payment details to be submitted simultaneously.
There are currently no plans to amend other provisions in the SDLT legislation which contain a 30 day time limit, for example, the requirement to make a return where as a result of new information, a transaction becomes notifiable or additional tax becomes payable.