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Stamp Duty Mitigation – balancing the argument

Run a quick online search for ‘Stamp Duty Mitigation’ and you could easily be forgiven for thinking that the only dilemma facing buyers is “Which company should I choose to set up my scheme?” 

Both sponsored ads and natural search results jostle for your attention with tempting tax saving promises.

Pay 0% Stamp Duty‘, ‘Avoid thousands in Tax‘ and all ‘Perfectly Legal‘ are the typical headline messages jumping out at you.

As you scroll down the page, the search results promise to ‘legally reduce your Stamp Duty‘ and show you ‘How to avoid Stamp Duty‘.

Yet, don’t be fooled. This is tax avoidance we are talking about here. Can it really be that simple? Isn’t there likely to be another side to this story?

Stamp Duty Mitigation – the other side of the story

Of course it isn’t as simple as it first appears.  Where there are, no doubt, genuine and legitimate reasons why Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) should not be paid in certain circumstances, exploiting the legislative provisions for these specific cases is how such schemes are constructed.

Make no mistake, this is ‘Tax Avoidance‘ achieved through exploiting loopholes and, as with any loophole exploitation, this is cat and mouse stuff.

(Don’t kid yourself – you, the buyer, are the mouse, and HMRC is the cat. )

However, the purpose of this blog is not to enter into an ethical debate on the subject of SDLT avoidance (although we do reserve the right to do so in other posts), rather to nudge anyone contemplating Stamp Duty Mitigation Scheme to dig deeper and properly research the idea before committing.

We will be publishing a number of articles presenting the unbiased facts, as well as a few case studies from Conveyancing Solicitors (none of whom will go any where near Stamp Duty Mitigation) warning against the inherent risks in these schemes.  

Stamp Duty Mitigation schemes can come back to haunt you years after you have forgotten about them.  Are you the sort of person who can live with that prospect?

If you are contemplating Stamp Duty Mitigation or are worried about the implications this sort of scheme, call us now on 033 0660 0286 and we will give you the unbiased facts.

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