UK Residency Status Definition Delayed

Monday, December 5, 2011 Print Email

The uncertainty and ambiguity over definitions of UK resident status will continue an extra year for nervous individuals and businesses, as the government postpones the announcement.

The delay was revealed in the Treasury’s draft Finance Bill published today and will come as no relief to those seeking clarification on the subject of non-domicile status.

The exchequer secretary to the treasury David Gauke, in a ministerial statement accompanying the draft bill, explained that defining residency for tax purposes required ‘careful consideration to ensure the legislation achieves its important aim of providing certainty for individuals and businesses’.

The delay means that now, instead of the original April 2012 date, the announcement will be put back to spring of the following year.

A disappointed Sean Drury, international mobility partner at PwC, said: ‘Although this latest consultation has been running since June, discussions have been taking place for the last 8 years. We were hopeful that the current confusion following the Gaines Cooper Supreme Court judgement would be clarified from 6 April 2012. We will now have a further period of uncertainty and individual's residency being subject to HMRC interpretation.’

Drury did also, however, take encouragement from the pause, seeing in it confirmation that ‘the government is listening to employers and individuals to ensure the new rules are fit for purpose - in this sense the delay may be worth the wait’.

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