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Does the sale of a house need to be reported?

I'm sure this isn't right!

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Saw this is in the financial pages of a major daily newspaper this morning, by an accountant in response to a query:  "You must make a UK property disposal return to HMRC within 60 days of disposing of the property (from the completion date) regardless of whether there is any capital gains tax to pay or not (my underline)."

Now I know that overseas residents have to report all property disposals but HMRC's own guidance says that "If you’re a UK resident, you do not need to report your gains online if your total gains are less than the tax-free allowance.", which answers my own question.  I guess the real question is to what extent is the media responsible for making sure what they print is correct?  Someone could easily get involved in time and effort (and possibly costs) in preparing to report the non-taxable gain or loss before they realise they didn't need to and the tax "expert" and her practice have been named, potentially sending her clients when she has given out incorrect information.

Replies (23)

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By David Ex
09th Jun 2022 11:42

Homeworker wrote:

I guess the real question is to what extent is the media responsible for making sure what they print is correct? 

You’re joking, right?

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By ireallyshouldknowthisbut
09th Jun 2022 12:27

Rule of thumb, any tax article in a newspaper is wrong.

Start from there and you cant go too wrong.

Bit like assuming all banks are rubbish so you can be pleasantly surprised if they are not.

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By SXGuy
09th Jun 2022 12:34

If the media were responsible for reporting accurate information 99% of them would be out of business by now.

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Replying to SXGuy:
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By Justin Bryant
15th Jun 2022 10:07

Check this out from today's headlines as a good example: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/blogs-the-papers-61806351

The fact these are European judges is pure happenstance, due to the ECtHR being physically in continental Europe. It could equally have been physically in the UK and the European Convention on Human Rights (the "European" there just being a description of where it was originally signed presumably - which was arbitrary as it could have equally been anywhere) is enshrined in UK statute under HRA 1998 i.e. UK law and not EU law.

Still, I suppose you should never let the facts get in the way of a good headline/story.

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By Justin Bryant
09th Jun 2022 12:58

I suggest you do a search here for the Murray Gell-Mann effect.

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Replying to Justin Bryant:
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By Homeworker
09th Jun 2022 15:40

Interesting article. A bit like the "mission statements" you sometimes see at businesses...

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By Hometing
09th Jun 2022 15:17

"to what extent is the media responsible for making sure what they print is correct?"

Absolutely none, if the past few years are anything to go by.

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Mark Telford Chartered Accountant
By Mark Telford
10th Jun 2022 14:21

Come on then...

... let's have the link to the article ;o)

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Replying to Mark Telford:
Lone Wolf
By Lone_Wolf
10th Jun 2022 14:44
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Replying to Lone_Wolf:
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By Homeworker
11th Jun 2022 15:00

Yes. It just annoyed me, which is why I felt prompted to comment on it.

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By Tax Dragon
10th Jun 2022 14:35

I've seen much worse in letters to clients from accountants.

Re media, are you suggesting there should be super-experts to check that the ordinary experts get it right?

And, more generally, not all parts of the media are equal. (But you have to dive pretty deep to find anything worse than MSN and the like might shovel at you.)

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Replying to Tax Dragon:
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By Justin Bryant
10th Jun 2022 16:03

A quick Google search shows it's a pretty common error. For example here: https://www.bakertillymooneymoore.co.uk/news/blog/disposals-of-uk-reside...

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Replying to Justin Bryant:
By SteveHa
11th Jun 2022 17:08

Not that I'm in the habit of defending BT (they did make me redundant, after all), but I'm pretty sure that they wrote that when even HMRC weren't sure what the rules were, and it was a safe assumption that they were correct at the time.

Of course, if they haven't updated or superseded it, then that's a different matter.

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Replying to SteveHa:
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By DKB-Sheffield
11th Jun 2022 19:06

I'm not certain the rules were that unclear on 5th Jan 2022 though - were they?

I admit the article was possibly originally written much earlier, but it has clearly been updated to take account of the Oct '21 60-day revision.

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By Justin Bryant
13th Jun 2022 09:50

What do people think if it's the sale (of a UK dwelling) by an offshore (non-UK resident) company at a loss? Is a CT600 needed?

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Replying to Justin Bryant:
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By Justin Bryant
13th Jun 2022 10:31

This HMRC general CT guidance suggests not (assuming income = net taxable income - as with ToAA s720 income): https://www.gov.uk/hmrc-internal-manuals/company-taxation-manual/ctm01410

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Replying to Justin Bryant:
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By Tax Dragon
16th Jun 2022 15:37

https://www.gov.uk/hmrc-internal-manuals/company-taxation-manual/ctm93255

Is "This Schedule applies for the purposes of capital gains tax" in para1(1) Sch2 FA2019 to be interpreted as also applying [the Schedule] for the purposes of CT in accordance with s2F(2) TCGA? (Or alternatively does that follow directly from s2F(3)?)

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Replying to Tax Dragon:
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By Justin Bryant
16th Jun 2022 16:07

Yes; I suppose the answer is yes per s2F TCGA 1992 and paras 1(1), 2(1)(c) schedule 2 FA 2019.

https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1992/12/section/2F

https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2019/1/schedule/2/enacted

Strange therefore that pretty much all official guidance (like that below) only refers to gains being required to be returned for CT purposes.

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

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Replying to Justin Bryant:
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By Tax Dragon
16th Jun 2022 16:24

Well the guidance uses the phrase "whether or not a gain arises", which presumably includes the case when there are losses.

What I'm not clear on is what extends the meaning of "This Act" in s2F to something like "This Act and any other Act that tinkers with the CGT rules or otherwise imposes obligations in relation to said tax". Does s2F(3) have that effect? (It's almost certain, I would suggest, that the courts would interpret purposefully anything that needed to be interpreted purposefully [whether here that's TCGA or FA2019 - or both, or something else] - if it's not actually explicit - such that Sch 2 applied to companies. I certainly wouldn't go to court to argue otherwise... but I might try an appeal against penalties.)

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Replying to Tax Dragon:
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By Justin Bryant
16th Jun 2022 16:53

That guidance above does not use the phrase "whether or not a gain arises" re companies.

On the contrary, all references to companies mention gains only.

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Replying to Justin Bryant:
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By Tax Dragon
16th Jun 2022 17:08

What about references to "person" (eg paras 33 and 67)?

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Replying to Tax Dragon:
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By Justin Bryant
17th Jun 2022 09:46

That's not good or clear enough is it as it's potentially ambiguous and could mean just an individual in context given what I say above? I'll end there as this is now getting a bit boring.

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Replying to Justin Bryant:
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By Tax Dragon
17th Jun 2022 10:34

Just as well you are such a clever lawyer and can interpret the law itself

Justin Bryant wrote:

Yes; I suppose the answer is yes per s2F TCGA 1992 and paras 1(1), 2(1)(c) schedule 2 FA 2019.

(By Justin Bryant 16th Jun 2022 16:07)

so it doesn't matter that you find the guidance so unhelpful.

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