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Employment-Related Securities (ERS) annual reporting 2017/18

Employment-Related Securities annual reporting 2017/18

ERS annual returns for 2017/18 should be filed online on or before 6 July 2018. HMRC ERS Online Services will accept returns only from 6 April, but employers should review the information required now in order to plan ahead of the reporting deadline.


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What are the reporting obligations?

In summary, employers have an annual obligation to report any of the following events that occur in relation to ERS during a tax year:

  • Grants of rights to acquire shares or other securities (e.g. options or long term incentive plan awards) to employees; 
  • Acquisitions of shares or other securities by employees; and/or
  • The lifting of restrictions (such as a risk of forfeiture) from shares or other securities held by employees.

These obligations extend to other reportable events involving shares or other securities which are acquired, or treated as having been acquired, by reason of employment.

Events that occur outside a formal employee share plan, such as an acquisition of shares or grant of options during a change of control or other transaction, can also give rise to reporting obligations.

Separate reporting obligations arise in relation to non-tax advantaged plans (or other arrangements), and each type of tax advantaged employee share plan. 

What should I do now?

Confirm registration status

In order to file the relevant returns, employers who have a reporting obligation for 2017/18 must register each plan or other arrangement with HMRC’s ERS Online Services (part of HMRC Online Services), if this has not already been done.

Non-tax advantaged plans or other arrangements can be included under a single registration. Tax advantaged plans must each be registered separately.

For tax advantaged CSOP, SAYE or SIP plans established during 2017/18, employers must on or before 6 July 2018 submit an online declaration that the conditions for tax advantaged status are met. If this is not done the relevant tax advantages may be lost.

Employers should review their ERS return registration status to confirm which registrations (if any) were made in previous years and whether any additional registrations are required. 

New registrations should be made in good time to allow all relevant submissions to be made on or before 6 July 2018.

Review the information required

ERS return templates and associated HMRC guidance are available here.

Completed ERS returns for 2017/18 can be submitted online only after 5th April 2018.  

However, employers should download and review those templates now, to confirm whether they hold the information required to complete and submit any required returns by the deadline.

Late filing penalties

Where a plan or other arrangement has been registered with ERS Online Services (either for this year or for the previous tax year), and the employer does not submit an ERS return by 6 July 2018, an automatic penalty of £100 per registration will arise. 

Additional penalties will arise where submissions remain outstanding by 6 October 2018 (an additional £300) and 6 January 2019 (a further £300). 

If no reportable events occur during a tax year in relation to a registered plan, a ‘nil’ return must be submitted by the filing deadline to avoid a penalty.

Registrations that are no longer required should be closed in order to avoid penalties for non-filing arising.

How KPMG can help

KPMG can assist companies to confirm their reporting obligations and understand the registration process.We can also assist with completing and submitting the annual ERS returns.If you have any queries, please get in touch with your normal contact or e-mail us.

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