Definition of stamp duty and stamp duty land tax

Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) has applied in the UK since 1 December 2003 when it replaced stamp duty on UK land and buildings and effected a substantially higher charge on leases for rent. The SDLT rates are

  • nil where the price is £125,000 or less (£150,000 for non-residential or mixed use),
  • 1 per cent where the price is between £125,001 (or £150,001) and £250,000,
  • 3 per cent where the price is between £250,001 and £500,000,
  • 4 per cent generally where the price is above £500,000 but
  • 5 per cent for residential property over £1 million.
  • 7 per cent for residential property over £2 million.

The rate of stamp duty land tax (SDLT) on a purchase of residential property is being increased from 5 per cent to 7 per cent where the consideration is more than £2m. But where such residential property is acquired by a 'non-natural person' (such as a company), the rate of SDLT increases to 15 per cent and from 20 March 2014 applies to properties above £500,000. The Annual  Tax on enveloped dwellings will also apply to such property.

Stamp Duty at 0.5 per cent of the price paid applies to transfers of UK shares irrespective of value. Stamp Duty Reserve Tax instead of stamp duty is levied on transactions carried out through electronic share dealing systems (also at 0.5 per cent). From 28 April 2014 stamp duty and stamp duty reserve tax will be abolished on shares quoted on recognised growth markets such as the Alternative Investment Market and the ISDX Growth Market. This will improve financing conditions for around 1,000 quoted UK businesses.[1]

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