Creative industry tax reliefs for Corporation Tax

Find out if your creative industry company qualifies for Corporation Tax Relief and how to make a claim.

There are 8 Corporation Tax reliefs and 2 Corporation Tax expenditure credits available to companies in the creative industries. 

From 1 April 2024, all claims must be accompanied by an additional information form. This will allow you to provide the necessary evidence to support your claim.

Creative industry tax reliefs and expenditure credits

How the reliefs work

The reliefs allow qualifying companies to:

  • increase their amount of allowable expenditure
  • reduce the amount of Corporation Tax the company needs to pay

If your company makes a loss, you may be able to surrender the loss and convert some or all of it into a payable tax credit. 

You may be able to claim the following reliefs on your Company Tax Return:

How expenditure credits work

  1. The expenditure credits give qualifying companies a taxable credit based on your amount of allowable expenditure.

  2. This is used to pay off your Corporation Tax liability and can also be set against other tax liabilities. 

  3. Your company receives any remaining amount as a payable credit.

Who can claim

Your company can claim creative industry tax reliefs if it’s:

  • liable to Corporation Tax
  • directly involved in the production and development of:
    • films
    • high-end television
    • children’s television
    • animated television
    • video games
    • theatrical productions
    • orchestral concerts
    • museum or gallery exhibitions
  • actively involved with decision-making
  • directly negotiates, contracts and pays for rights, goods and services

Your company must have responsibility throughout development, from the start of pre-production until the completion of the film, programme or game.

For theatrical productions, orchestral concerts or exhibitions, the company must be responsible for producing, running and closing the production.

Cultural test

To qualify for creative industry tax reliefs, all films and television programmes or video games must be certified as British. They must pass a cultural test or qualify through an internationally agreed co-production treaty.

The British Film Institute (BFI) manages certification and qualification on behalf of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. The British Film Institute will issue:

  • an interim certificate for uncompleted work
  • a final certificate where production has finished

You can find more information about certification on the British Film Institute website.

Further information

A specialist unit within HMRC deals with claims for creative industry tax reliefs and credits. You can send your questions about claiming the reliefs to the Creative Industries Unit.

Published 1 January 2007
Last updated 19 January 2024 + show all updates
  1. We have updated the page to include guidance on 2 new Corporation Tax expenditure credits: Audio-Visual Expenditure Credit and Video Games Expenditure Credit.

  2. This guidance has been updated to include a link to the Museum and Galleries Exhibition Tax Relief manual.

  3. A new section covering Museums and Galleries Exhibition Tax Relief has been added.

  4. Links to Orchestra Tax Relief Manual and Video Games Development Company Manual have been added.

  5. Guidance updated to advise companies if they receive more than €500,000 a year in state aid, certain details will be published on the European Commission website. Information about Orchestra Tax Relief added.

  6. Details of Childrens Television Tax Relief added to the page.

  7. Link to the Theatre Tax Relief manual has been added.

  8. First published.