Budget 2005


Personal Income Tax

Tax Credits

National Insurance Contributions





Capital Gains Tax

Stamp Duty Land Tax

Inheritance Tax

Corporation Tax

Business Tax

Value Added Tax

Other Measures

Tax Tables

National Insurance


Budget Summary Introduction

Although the date still hasn't been announced, everyone knows that a general election is around the corner. Tax is usually a main election battleground, and the Conservatives have already promised cuts if they win - and declared that Labour will have to put up tax after the election, if the vote goes the other way. Michael Howard immediately said that Mr Brown gives with one hand (before the election) and takes away with the other - in some cases immediately, and in some cases later.

Against that background, Gordon Brown had to deliver possibly his last Budget as Chancellor - he seems likely to move to a different position after the election, one way or another. Would he shamelessly distribute largesse to the voters? Or would he try to polish his favoured image of prudent competence, combined with some social reform and complication of the tax system?

As usual, the speech itself does not tell the full story. Many of the important details are hidden away in press releases issued by the Inland Revenue and Customs after the Chancellor sits down. This booklet summarises the main changes and outlines their likely effect on the average taxpayer.

Significant points

  • Income tax allowances and thresholds increased in line with inflation

  • Increase in threshold for Stamp Duty Land Tax on houses to £120,000

  • Abolition of exemption from SDLT for commercial property in disadvantaged areas

  • Registered same-sex partners to be taxed as married couples from December 2005

  • No changes to tax rules on small businesses or main residences

  • New tax rules for discretionary trusts, some backdated to April 2004

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