Weekly tax brief | 9 February 2021

VAT rubs salt in the Grenfell Tower cladding wound for private leaseholders
Daisy Sharpe and Ian Carpenter
Now the UK has left the EU’s VAT system, will the government use its new autonomy to allow more property owners and leaseholders to benefit from VAT relief when replacing cladding found to be dangerous after the Grenfell Tower fire?

GPs to receive tax refunds and pension boost which could see them retire early
James Gransby
Changes to NHS pensions announced last week could lead to GPs accelerating retirement plans, armed with a larger pension pot at age 60 and up to five-figure tax refunds. 

Tax reform: how much and what?
Sarah Saunders
Does the tax system as it stands make sense? The Institute for Fiscal Studies argues it distorts taxpayer’s behaviour and produces illogical differences between tax rates for different business structures.

Hidden tax traps for younger generation jumping into the investment property market
Elaine Shiels
The SDLT holiday has tempted many to purchase buy-to-let properties, but their new venture may not be as lucrative as it seems. Changes to tax relief for mortgage interest can easily affect the tax liability, but less known is the impact on Child Benefit and Student Loan repayments. Younger people and parents may be in for a surprise from their tax return and could be forced to increase rents to make their investment worthwhile. 

OECD clarifies impact of the continuing coronavirus travel restrictions on taxpayers 
Jackie Hall
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has recently published further guidance on the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on tax treaty related issues, which seeks to clarify the tax position of individuals and businesses affected by ongoing travel restrictions.