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Capital gains tax changes announced: Move to cut back risk of ‘horribly expensive’ bill | Personal Finance | Finance


Currently, if a pair transfers assets between them any time after the tax yr wherein they separated, there could also be a tax to pay. The brand new rules, which come into play next yr, will give couples three tax years from the split to share assets without triggering a tax bill. Couples can even be given unlimited time to settle if those assets are a part of a proper divorce agreement. The foundations around property are also changing.

These changes will allow those that moved out of a marital home but kept a share in it would have the opportunity to say Private Residence Relief (PRR) if the property is sold.

Those that have transferred their interest within the property to their ex will have the opportunity to use the identical tax treatment to the sale proceeds as applied after they transferred it.

This modification is welcomed by experts stating that it would be a “huge relief” to those that are going through more complicated separations.

It’s because it would give separate couples more time to come back to an agreement.

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Sarah Coles, senior personal finance analyst, Hargreaves Lansdown said: “While you’re going through a divorce, there’s already enough stress and pressure to be getting on with.

“Couples don’t need the added trauma of being on the clock to separate their funds before the top of the tax yr.”

Ms Coles explained that in the intervening time, any transfer of assets between the couple in the identical tax yr because the separation is taken into account to be a transfer between spouses so it doesn’t trigger Capital Gains Tax.

Nevertheless, if the couple crosses tax years while they’re still finding out the main points, any transfer could potentially be subject to the tax.


Ms Coles said: “For anyone who splits late within the tax yr, or takes some time to come back to an agreement, this will be horribly expensive.”

The rule change follows a advice from the Office for Tax Simplification (OTS) in May last yr.

Its report “Simplifying practical, technical and administrative issues” checked out how the Capital Gains Tax rules apply to individuals who separate and divorce

The OTS beneficial that the Government should extend the “no gain no loss” window on separation to later than the top of the tax yr to not less than two years after the separation event.

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Additionally they beneficial that it must also be prolonged for any reasonable time set for the transfer of assets in accordance with a financial agreement approved by a court or equivalent.

The Government responded in November 2021 and agreed that the “no gain no loss” window on separation and divorce ought to be prolonged.

In keeping with the law firm Winckworth Sherwood, between 2019 and 2020 it took a median of 53 weeks from a divorce petition being issued to the pronouncement of Decree Absolute.

The law firm added that this time didn’t account for the incontrovertible fact that many couples actually separate before issuing divorce proceedings.

Commenting on the announcement, Laura Suter, head of non-public finance at AJ Bell said: “Before now it’s been a bizarre case where it’s more useful to get divorced in the brand new tax yr in April, because it gives you more time to sort your funds.

“Likewise when you were ‘unlucky’ enough to get divorced in late March you’d face a touch to get your financial affairs in line before the April fifth deadline.

“Clearly basing your divorce across the tax yr system isn’t practical, so this fix will avoid loads of hassle and stress.”

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