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HMRC publish update on employee share plans

HMRC publish update on employee share plans

HMRC have published further guidance on EMI working time declarations, and on deferring monthly SAYE savings.


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HMRC have published Employment Related Securities Bulletin 29, which contains a reminder that on or before 6 July 2018 tax advantaged share plans established during 2017/18 must be registered with HMRC online, and all end of year employment-related securities annual returns for 2017/18 should be filed with HMRC. The Bulletin also contains important updates regarding EMI working time declarations and deferring monthly SAYE savings.

Click here to read the Employment Related Securities Bulletin 29.

EMI working time declarations
The EMI legislation requires, amongst other things, that EMI option holders:

  • Commit a minimum amount of their total working time to the relevant employer; and
  • Provide that employer with a signed written declaration that this working time requirement is met at the time the relevant option is granted (a ‘working time declaration’).

HMRC have confirmed that a new working time declaration must be provided to the employer in respect of each grant of EMI options.

In HMRC’s view, it is not possible for a working time declaration given in relation to one grant of EMI options, also to apply to any subsequent grants.

This is the case even where there has been no change to the employee’s working pattern, and the working time requirement has been met continuously since the first working time declaration was made.

Deferring monthly SAYE savings
Currently, employees enrolled in a savings contract linked to an SAYE option can defer payment of up to six monthly contributions by up to six months in total.

From 1 September 2018, monthly contributions may be deferred on up to 12 occasions over the duration of the savings contract.

HMRC have confirmed that all employees with SAYE savings contracts in place on 1 September 2018 will be able to defer monthly contributions on this basis, without any requirement for those contracts to be amended. However, any contributions deferred prior to 1 September 2018 will count towards the new twelve month deferral limit.

If you have any queries, or would like to talk through EMI or other employee incentive arrangements, please get in touch with your normal contact or e-mail

For further information please contact:

Chris Barnes

Eddie Norrie

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