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Lee Harvey Oswald

Inland Revenue So8 - Stamp Duty On Agreements Securing Short Tenancies

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Hi,

I would appreciate some advice on a draft contract that has been presented to me by a local firm of sharks.

One of the clauses states:

Failure to have the Original of this agreement or it’s Counterpart (e.g. either half) stamped (if required) by the Inland Revenue and pay any appropriate duty within 30 days of commencement of the tenancy, may result in a penalty or fine and the agreement not being accepted as evidence in court.

I have looked at the Inland Revenue rules and SO8 states:

Stamp duty must be paid within 30 days of the date the agreement becomes effective. This is normally the date on the document. If you don't have the document stamped within this period, you will be liable to pay a penalty as well as the stamp duty. Interest charges will also arise if the correct amount of duty has not been paid on time.

It seems a bit harsh that the contract could be rendered null and void through any attempt by the landlord at tax avoidance, or am I reading too much into this? I would prefer to amend this paragraph of the contract as follows:

Responsibility to present the Original of this agreement or it’s Counterpart (e.g. either half) to be stamped (if required) by the Inland Revenue and to pay any appropriate duty within 30 days of commencement of the tenancy, rests solely upon the Landlord. Any omission in respect of this duty will not impact the legitimacy of this contract.

Can anyone see any flaws with this?

Interestingly, there appears to be an exemption for any contract shorter than 12 months, this leads me onto another point. The term of the contract is 9th June 2006 to 7th June 2007. Should I insist upon midday on 09/06/06 to midday on 09/06/07?

Any advice would be gratefully received.

Thanks in advance.

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As far as I understand it, the less than 1 year period means you can have it stamped for free.

Thanks for the prompt response.

Apologies, I should have clarified, I will be the tenant. I am not too concerned about the costs incurred by the landlord, I am more interested in ensuring that the contract is valid.

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  • 301 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
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