Gloucestershire companies missing out on land clean up relief

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Gemma Brindley, corporate tax director in Crowe Clark Whitehill’s Cheltenham office

Gloucestershire companies, particularly SMEs, are missing out on thousands of pounds of tax relief and time is running out, according to national audit, tax and advisory firm Crowe Clark Whitehill.

Gemma Brindley, corporate tax director in the firm’s Cheltenham office, says many businesses are failing to take advantage and claim their full land remediation relief (LRR) entitlement.

The oversight can lose them thousands of pounds and, given there is a time limit for retrospective claims of three years, they may need to act fast, she cautions.

The relief is available on land or buildings in the UK that have been purchased by a company and, at the time of acquisition, were in a contaminated or derelict state.

LRR can include the cost of employing staff engaged in carrying out the remediation work, the cost of materials and on payments made to subcontractors.

It is applicable to various types of contaminants, extending, for example, to oil removal, the safe removal of asbestos and clearing Japanese Knotweed.

The relief is available on projects such as developments, regeneration projects, fit-outs and refurbishments where companies are subject to corporation tax.

Unlike capital allowances, it is available to property investors and developers alike.

For owner occupiers and investors, the rate is 150% while for developers it is 50%.

For loss making companies, a tax credit is available.

Gemma says: “There is always a danger that opportunities such as this can be missed as companies have to actively claim land remediation relief.

“LRR needs to be maximised as it can produce significant savings.

“However, there are certain restrictions, for example where the expenditure has been subsidised by grant funding.

“It is best to take advice on what can and cannot be claimed.”