Blog

Structuring property ventures

At its most basic level, property can be held either directly (by you as an individual, whether wholly or in partnership with another person(s)) or indirectly through a company or a discretionary trust. This note does not consider trust ownership of property or ownership through a self-invested personal pension (SIPP), but we can advise you on these areas if either is an option you would like to explore.

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Incorporating a property rental business

Over the last few years there have been a litany of changes to the UK tax rules around the taxation of residential property ownership for business purposes. Many of the changes have been such that those who previously operated “buy-to-let” businesses in their personal capacity (as a sole trader or through a partnership) will have considered whether it is more tax effective to incorporate their personally held businesses into a company structure.

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Do the Government have the legal authority to enforce mask wearing?

From the 24th of July 2020, the UK Government announced that in certain public places, face coverings would be mandatory. This decision has generated considerable debate. Social media platforms have been instrumental in placing blame for the spread of the virus on those who choose not to, or those who cannot, comply with recent measures. However, it can be said that this blame is misplaced. Not only is there a lack of scientific evidence to suggest that masks are effective, the Government have also enforced these measures without the law to support them.

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How to manage both EMI and unapproved share options on a company sale/exit

When your company goes under the due diligence spotlight, an aspect that will be under intense scrutiny will be any form of share options/awards scheme. It is imperative that your company has met the HMRC standards in relation to these schemes, so as not to delay or adversely impact the sale of the company. This is because if a problem has been found then the time taken to correct the error with HMRC will likely be greater than the time span of the sale and with the added detriment that there is unlikely to be a tax-efficient solution and you can find that your buyer wants to escrow sale proceeds or obtain specific indemnities to protect against any uncertain tax costs for the company.

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M&A funding through the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS)

Late 2019/Early 2020, liquidity in the M&A market was strong, uncertainty created by the general election was on the decline; whilst the value of both UK domestic and outward mergers was up by £1.1b in comparison to Q1 of 2019. However, as COVID-19 spread and fear began to grip the market, numerous M&A deals were shelved or placed on hold, until the market showed signs of recuperation. Those delayed deals will soon face the added detriment of a greater focus on due diligence and how the target continued to operate throughout the crisis.

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Furloughed employees and EMI Share Option Schemes

As you may have read in our blog post relating to furloughed workers, a furloughed employee is still an employee, given that they remain on the company’s payroll during any period of furlough leave. This is despite the fact that in order for the employer to recover up to 80% of the furloughed employee’s wages under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS), the employee cannot do any work whatsoever for the employer during the furlough period.

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