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bigduckontax, Accountant
Category: Tax
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I am a director in a small family owned property investment

Customer Question

I am a director in a small family owned property investment company, we are just about to complete on a sale to a development company. We want to distribute funds in the most tax efficient way, is a dividend the best way? I have been advised I can put quite a large amount tax free into my pension? There has been many issues within the family and we want to separate ourselves financially in the most tax efficient way. Thanks
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  bigduckontax replied 3 years ago.

Hello, I'm Keith and happy to help you with your question.

Dividends are all very well, but they have the following disadvantage in that they are grossed up for tax in your personal tax account at your marginal rate of tax which may put you into higher tax brackets. Furthermore, dividends do not count against Corporation Tax in a company's tax account.

You can put up to 40K into a Private Pension Plan in 14/15. If you use a SIPP you can go back and mop up unused contribution levels from earlier years. However, pension contributions from you personally or your employer when aggregated may not exceed 100% of emoluments. Pension contributions are allowable against Corporation Tax. As a director your are an employee per se. Unfortunately, depending on the salary paid to you there may be little wriggle room here.

Finally, as a classic example of Benjamin Franklin's dictum that in life here are but two certainties, death and taxes, the disposal of the shares in your company would be liable to Capital Gains Tax on the gain you make on selling your shares to the development company. This is levied at 18% or 28% or a combination of the two rates depending on your income plus the gain in the year of disposal. However as an employee you may well be entitled to Entrepreneurs' Relief which limits the tax rate to a flat 10%. In any event you have an Annual Exempt Amount of 11K to offset any gain.

I think that you may well need to consult a trusted, local professional to guide you through this process as a slip up could cost you dear tax wise.

I do hope I have shed a little light on the situation in this quick canter through the possibilities and pitfalls of your position.