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HMRC internal manual

Stamp Duty Land Tax Manual

Introduction to Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT): Background

SDLT, introduced in Finance Act 2003, is a charge on land transactions which replaced the former stamp duty (SD). But if a transaction takes place following a contract dated 10 July 2003 or earlier the stamp duty regime may still apply.

SDLT is a tax on land transactions involving any estate, interest, right or power in or over land in the England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Documents evidencing land transactions effected on or after 1 December 2003 and chargeable to SDLT do not need to be physically stamped.

Further guidance on the commencement and transitional provisions can be found at SDLTM49000.

From April 2015 SDLT will no longer apply to land transactions in Scotland, these will instead be subject to Land and Buildings Transaction Tax. Please see the Scottish Government website @