Friday 30 January 2015

Tax fiddle? No, tax relief for fiddlers!

Her Majesty's Treasury issued a media release last Friday which will be good news for performers of music and those who organise them commercially. The media release, Tax relief to support Britain's world-class orchestras, announced the launch of a consultation, Orchestra tax relief, on proposed tax relief for orchestras that are UK registered companies which are liable to pay corporation tax. The proposal is modelled on theatre tax relief, which was introduced last year.

Orchestral tax relief: giving a new\
meaning to the words "tax band"?
Qualifying orchestras (which should be engaged in producing live orchestral performances, thus excluding studio orchestras) will enjoy an additional corporation tax deduction which can be surrendered for a payable tax credit. While integral costs for to the creative process and production (eg player fees, rehearsal costs, venue hire) will attract the relief, indirect expenditure such marketing or financing will not. Nor will ordinary running costs. A higher rate of credit is proposed for touring performances (defined as playing in three different venues within two weeks). Orchestras may group multiple performances in one claim and more than half of their performances must be played by at least 14 performers drawn from defined orchestral sections.

Comments on this proposal should be made by the stipulated time of 11.45 pm on 5 March 2015. Assuming that all is well, further details are expected some time in the spring of this year and the relief is due to kick in on 1 April 2016.

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