The Government has introduced new legislation into the Corporation Tax Acts covering Extra-Statutory Concession C16 (ESC C16) which took effect on 1 March 2012.
Previously, with the prior consent of HMRC, distributions to shareholders as part of an informal winding-up prior to a company being struck off the Companies Register, were taxed as a capital receipt. The new Order caps the limit of total distributions which can be treated as such at £25,000.
Readers will recall that the Treasury Solicitor’s office withdrew its guidelines in October 2011 relating to their recovery of assets with a value of less than £4,000 following the dissolution of a company. The message is clear; the Government requires a formal process to be followed for companies which have created value but have come to the end of their life. Companies will have to be placed into liquidation when the remaining assets exceed £25,000 if the shareholders wish to have the distribution of retained profits taxed as a capital receipt.
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