Business tax

Annual investment allowance (AIA)

The AIA will double to £500,000 for qualifying investment in plant and machinery made on or after 1 April 2014 for corporation tax and 6 April 2014 for income tax. This level of AIA will continue until 31 December 2015.


THINK AHEAD – Rethink your plans for investment in new business equipment. The annual investment allowance gives businesses immediate tax relief on the purchase of most types of equipment. The limit has doubled to £500,000 a year from April 2014. Get advice about timing your expenditure.


Zero-emission goods vehicles

The enhanced capital allowance for zero-emission goods vehicles will be extended to 31 March 2018, but will be limited to businesses that do not claim the plug-in van grant.

Corporation tax (CT)

As announced previously, the main rate of CT will be 21% from April 2014 and 20% from April 2015. The small profits rate will remain at 20% from April 2014.

Associated companies

The associated companies rules will be replaced in April 2015 with simpler provisions based on 51% group membership.

Avoidance schemes involving transfer of corporate profits

Companies will be prevented from obtaining a CT advantage by transferring profits between companies within a group. Where a company transfers all or a significant part of its profits to another group member after 18 March 2014 as part of tax avoidance arrangements, the company’s profits will be taxed as though the transfer had not occurred.

Research and development (R&D) tax credits

The rate of the payable credit for loss-making companies under the SME (small and medium sized enterprises) R&D tax credit scheme will increase from 11% to 14.5% from April 2014.

Business premises renovation allowance (BPRA)

As previously announced, measures will take effect from April 2014 to clarify the type of expenditure that qualifies for relief under the BPRA. They include ensuring qualifying expenditure is limited to the actual direct costs of building and renovation works and associated services. The time in which works must be carried out is extended to 36 months. BPRA will not be available where another form of state aid has or will be received.


SAVER – Sharing with your spouse. If you run a company or business, make sure that your spouse/partner is appropriately paid and pensioned for any work and that they share in the profits if possible. You may be able to adjust your incomes to retain your child benefit.


Theatre, film and video games CT reliefs

There will be a new theatre tax relief at 25% for qualifying touring productions and 20% for other qualifying productions from 1 September 2014.

From April 2014, relief at 25% will be available on the first £20 million of qualifying film production expenditure and at 20% above that level, as previously announced. The cultural test will be modernised and the minimum UK expenditure requirement will reduce from 25% to 10%.

Video games tax relief will be extended to goods and services provided from within the European Economic Area (EEA).

Corporate loss buying

R&D allowances will be excluded from the anti-loss buying rules announced in the Budget 2013. This will have effect for qualifying changes on or after 1 April 2014.

Change of ownership rules

There will be a relaxation in the rules restricting the availability of relief for CT trading losses where the ownership of companies changes after 31 March 2014, as previously announced.

Controlled foreign companies (CFCs)

The CFC rules will be reinforced to prevent UK base erosion caused by the transfer offshore of intra-group interest income or by moving a foreign affiliate’s bank debt into a UK company.

Worldwide debt cap (WWDC) rules

The WWDC rules will be changed in cases where a worldwide group includes entities without ordinary share capital. There will be changes to the regulation making power for elections to transfer WWDC liabilities for companies involved in whole business securitisations.

Enterprise zones

The period in which enhanced capital allowances are available in enterprise zones will be extended by three years, until 31 March 2020.

Businesses will be given three more years – until 31 March 2018 – to locate in an enterprise zone to qualify for business rates discounts.

False self-employment

Legislation effective from 6 April 2014 will prevent employment intermediaries being used to avoid employment taxes and obligations by disguising employment as self-employment.

Partnerships

Legislation will counter the loss of employment taxes in relation to salaried members of limited liability partnerships (LLPs). Measures will also counter tax-motivated allocations of business profits and losses in partnerships that include individuals and companies, and tax-motivated disposals of assets through partnerships. These will take effect from April 2014 subject to some minor changes to the measures that were previously announced.

Construction industry scheme (CIS)

There will be consultations in summer 2014 about ways to improve the operation of the CIS for smaller businesses and the introduction of mandatory online filing for contractors.

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