Spring Statement – Lightweight in light of other events?

14th March 2019

The previous night’s vote on the Brexit deal cast a heavy shadow over the Spring Statement from Chancellor Philip Hammond who delivered few significant announcements in his 13th March statement, instead reiterating or updating those made in Budget 2018.

However, a few points for our business clients and contacts to note are:

TAX AVOIDANCE, EVASION AND NON-COMPLIANCE: Further consultations and reports will be published in the coming months. The statement outlines 13 consultations, draft regulations and call for evidence documents which are due to be published in the coming months, including regulations for maturing child trust funds and a consultation on extending private residence relief in capital gains tax (CGT)

MAKING TAX DIGITAL: The Government has confirmed it will take what it calls a ‘light touch' approach to penalties in the first year of implementation. The written announcement suggests that where businesses are doing their best to comply, no filing or record keeping penalties will be issued - clearly a subjective test, which will concern many.

MINIMUM AND LIVING WAGE:  The Chancellor announced the appointment of Professor Arindrajit Dube (Professor of Economics, UMass Amherst) to review the international evidence on the impact of minimum wage.

STRUCTURES AND BUILDINGS ALLOWANCE: The Government published further draft legislation on the introduction of the new capital allowance relief for non-residential structures and buildings, and has invited responses by 24 April 2019.

For further detail of the key announcements read the Whittles eNewsletter here.