On 6 December 2011 HMRC published draft clauses for the 2012 Finance Bill. This will set the scene for tax changes in 2012-13 and subsequent tax years. Notable items include:
- From 1 April 2013 companies will be able to apply a 10% tax rate on profits attributable to patents and other intellectual property.
- Research & Development tax credits are to be improved.
- The new statutory residence test is to be introduced from April 2013, a year later than expected.
- A new scheme to encourage investment in new, small start up companies will be launched from April 2012. The scheme will be a variant of the present EIS scheme and will be known as the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme. Whilst reliefs may be greater, investment limits are more restricted.
- The present EIS and Venture Capital Trust legislation will be more restrictive in order to focus on higher risk activities.
- The UK tax position of certain non-domiciled individuals is changing from 6 April 2012. The good news is that non-doms will be able to bring in funds to invest in the UK without being penalised; the bad news is that for non-domiciles who have been resident in at least 12 of the previous 14 tax years, the present annual charge payable to secure more favourable tax breaks is to increase from £30,000 to £50,000 from April 2012.
- The UK Controlled Foreign Company (CFC) rules are to be relaxed in certain circumstances. Not all of the expected changes in this area have been published – the remainder are expected to be made public shortly.