UK Business and Capital Gains Tax

May 13th, 2010 by Chris St Cartmail

With capital gains tax rates expected to be raised significantly within weeks, the question many business owners have is "what impact will this have on the selling of my business?"

The statements so far put out by the coalition government on the proposed rise in CGT have not been terribly clear, though it is safe to say we can expect that the rate for non-business assets will move towards an alignment with income tax rates.

But what will be interesting is how the forthcoming legislation will define 'business assets'.

We have also heard utterances that entrepreneurial business activities will be offered 'generous exemptions'. What does that mean exactly?

Does it mean that the current Entrepreneur's Relief – a lifetime allowance of £2m at 10% – will stay as it is? Given that small to medium sized business owners are already feeling heavily taxed we suspect that this will be largely preserved. However, there may be less generous allowances for quick capital gains. So perhaps we'll see a return to the pre-2008 taper relief system?

We'll keep you posted as the news breaks.