Brexit and the implementation period ― impact for UK companies

By Tolley

The following Corporation Tax guidance note by Tolley provides comprehensive and up to date tax information covering:

  • Brexit and the implementation period ― impact for UK companies
  • EU law and related legislation
  • Withholding taxes
  • State aid impact
  • Reorganisations
  • Other issues for consideration

The UK negotiated a Withdrawal Agreement and left the EU on 31 January 2020 with an 11-month implementation period up to 31 December 2020.

During this implementation period, the UK is no longer a member of the EU but is subject to current EU laws, remaining a member of the single market and customs union. The UK and the EU will continue to negotiate future trading relationships. However, given the current impasse between the UK and the EU, the possibility that the UK will leave the EU without any sort of deal on 31 December 2020 is still a possibility.

It will be important that companies review the potential tax implications of such a withdrawal on their current businesses and put in place plans to mitigate the impact of a no-deal Brexit, at the end of the implementation period.

For companies, there are several areas of UK tax law that are likely to be significantly impacted by a withdrawal from the EU. Most notably, a no-deal Brexit (at the end of the implementation period) will affect the treatment of international transactions between groups of companies that operate across multiple EU member states. However, the impact of EU-derived law on domestic legislation also means that a no-deal Brexit may have wider implications for UK resident companies.

This guidance note gives an overview of the tax areas affected if the UK leaves without a deal and some of the practical issues companies should consider. The potential impacts will vary significantly depending on any exit route that is negotiated and agreed between the EU and the UK during the implementation period.

For commentary on the implications of Brexit on personal and employment taxes, see the Brexit and the implementation period ― personal tax and employment tax implications

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