Property holding structures—direct tax treatment of contractual joint ownership
Produced in partnership with Charles Goddard of Rosetta Tax
Property holding structures—direct tax treatment of contractual joint ownership

The following Tax guidance note Produced in partnership with Charles Goddard of Rosetta Tax provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Property holding structures—direct tax treatment of contractual joint ownership
  • Legal joint ownership
  • Trusts of land
  • Other contractual arrangements
  • Annual tax on enveloped dwellings

The simplest form of joint investment in property is for the investors to own the property jointly. While this is relatively rare in a commercial context, where investors prefer to establish a vehicle such as a partnership or a company to act as a joint venture vehicle, it is still the most common form of joint investment. Most investments by individuals will take this form.

Contractual joint ownership can take many forms, such as:

  1. where each party has a direct legal interest in the asset (see Practice Note: Establishing a beneficial interest)

  2. where a trust (whether express or implied) is formed over the property, so that the property is held by trustees on behalf of beneficiaries of the trust (see Practice Note: Trusts of land—property)

  3. where an implicit partnership arrangement exists (see Practice Note: Forming a general partnership and continuing obligations)

This Practice Note considers each of these forms of joint ownership, their direct tax (ie income tax, corporation tax and capital gains tax (CGT)) treatment and the tax implications for the contracting parties.

References in this Practice Note to CGT are to capital gains tax for individuals and trustees and to corporation tax on chargeable gains for companies subject to corporation tax.

These forms of contractual joint ownership have different treatments for the purposes of VAT and SDLT, which are outside the scope