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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

TFN is published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6BB. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration number SC003558.

The likely impact of the budget on UK charities

This opinion piece is over 8 years old

Nick Sladden of Baker Tilly expects to see more measures to prevent charities being used for tax avoidance in Wednesday's budget.

Nick Sladden, head of charities and social enterprise at Baker Tilly
Nick Sladden, head of charities and social enterprise at Baker Tilly

We are likely to see the government announcing changes to the definition of a charity for tax purposes in the budget next Wednesday, as well as further measures to prevent charities being used for tax avoidance.

While no genuine charity would allow itself to be used for tax avoidance purposes, there have been some recent high profile schemes which the government is determined to stamp out.

Historically, such moves have resulted in some very blunt legislative instruments, so the government will have to be take care that any new measures do not have unintended consequences.

We also expect to see a final expanded version of the draft Social Investment Tax Relief announced in the Autumn Statement. This will be of particular interest to social enterprises looking to raise funds and to individuals looking to invest in them.

The government and the Prime Minister are committed to using this relief to encourage investment in social enterprises, but final details of the level of relief and its extension to certain Social Investment Bonds through a Cabinet Office accreditation scheme have yet to be announced.

An initial limiting factor on take up is likely to be the number of organisations looking for finance under the scheme until the low limit on funding to individual bodies imposed by State Aid requirements is lifted. There is a risk that the scheme could simply divert funds from gift aid donations into Social Investment Tax Relief reducing the amount of new money raised if the relief is too generous.



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