Providing capital allowances advisory support during the legal due diligence process, particularly in relation to occupational leases, landlord contributions, purchases and disposals.
Project & Development Support
Preparation of capital allowances claims for property developments, refurbishments and fitting out projects.
The Tax System
In designing a tax system, it is customary to consider what people own, what they earn and what they spend. A tax on land is the oldest of the modern taxes. In the past movable property was somewhat difficult to tax, but as the marketplaces developed the imposition of a tax on the sale or transfer of goods or services became a productive source of revenue.
International trade gave rise to import duties not only for the raising of revenue, but also to control the amount and kind of imported goods. Domestic trade encompasses a variety of excise duties on specific commodities (e.g., liquor and cigarettes) and levies on designated transactions, e.g., stamp duties on transactions and documents.
Stamp duties in respect of land transactions have been replaced by the SDLT. In some countries (e.g., the USA) sales taxes are imposed at the retail level. Countries within the European Union impose a value added tax (VAT) on goods and services at each stage of production.
A personal income tax was imposed for the first time in Great Britain in 1799; it was dropped for a short while and revived in 1842.
Need to Achieve Fairness in Taxation
No single tax is a perfect indicator of one’s ability to pay. In view of this, most countries try to diversify their tax systems. Most people link the concept of ability to pay with income. This assumption is in retreat having regard to the inequities associated with modern income tax systems.
The property tax has also been criticised, especially in the USA and the UK. Tax specialists have argued for a comprehensive system of taxation on consumption expenditures, but public acceptance has been lacking.
No single tax is acceptable by all, since its incidence (burden) falls more heavily on some than on others.
To a certain extent, the full impact of a tax is diminished by exemptions, exceptions, reliefs and other loopholes in the tax system due partly to humanitarian concerns for those who might be overburdened by the tax and partly to political pressure and administrative inefficiency or ability to deal with the complex tax structure.
Hence, the imposition of a wide variety of taxes can spread out the inequities and mitigate their impact.
The economic effects and, therefore, the equity of most taxes cannot be fully understood because of the difficulty of knowing where the ultimate burden will fall. Even the so- called direct taxes, e.g., income tax, do not escape this problem. Income tax has indirect consequences as the tax rate will influence a taxpayer’s decisions to work, save and invest.
The formal incidence of a tax must be distinguished from its effective incidence. The formal incidence falls on those who have the legal responsibility to pay the tax, while the effective incidence identifies those who ultimately bear the burden of the tax as a result of its imposition. The formal incidence of a tax is generally irrelevant to its effective incidence.