12 February 2019 #Real Estate
Stamp Duty Land Tax (“SDLT”) is a tax which is payable on the purchase or leasehold transfers of property if they are valued over a certain threshold. SDLT is payable to HMRC. Currently, and until 28 February 2019, the filing and payment deadline for SDLT is 30 days after the 'effective date' of the transaction (i.e. completion of the transaction). However, from 1 March 2019 there is reduction in the deadline for filing land transaction returns and paying SDLT from 30 days to 14 days. This is not retrospective and will only apply to transactions with an effective date on or after 1 March 2019. An important point to note, which occasionally catches people out, is that it’s 14 days and not 14 working days.
The background of the decision is that HMRC has been advocating a reduction in the time limit that purchasers have to file a SDLT return and pay the tax due from 30 days to 14 days in order to keep matters moving swiftly and then matters can be registered more expediently at the Land Registry. HMRC have produced figures which state that 85% of SDLT forms are currently filed within 14 days of the relevant transaction so hopefully the reduction should have limited impact. HMRC have also stated that a new form will be released which simplifies the process, but an update is still pending on this. In the meantime, the best advice is to ensure your SDLT Return is submitted and paid directly after your matter completes.