Settlements legislation: summary - factors to look for
The lists below are by no means definitive of situations to which the settlements legislation can be applied. For further guidance contact HMRC Trusts & Esates Technical Edinburgh.
- Disproportionately large returns on capital investments.
- Differing classes of shares enabling dividends to be paid only to shareholders paying lower rates of tax.
- Dividends being waived so that higher dividends can be paid to shareholders paying lower rates of tax.
- Income being transferred from the person making most of the profits of a business to a friend or family member who pays tax at a lower rate.
There are a wide range of arrangements that can potentially be caught by the settlements legislation which do not involve a trust. Each case will depend on the facts but some of the most common situations which we see are:
- Shares subscribed at par that carry only restricted rights.
- Shares given away that carry only restricted rights.
- A limited share in a partnership gifted or transferred below value.
- Dividend waivers.
- Situations where dividends are paid only on certain classes of shares.
- Dividends paid to the minor children or stepchildren of the settlor.