Blog: EMI Options

Temporary extension to trading loss carry-back rules - implications for deals

Tax Bite – Temporary extension to trading loss carry-back rules – implications for deals We noted in a previous Tax Bite that the Spring Budget on 3 March 2021 included proposals for a temporary increase in the carry-back period for trading losses in response to the impact upon businesses of the COVID-19 pandemic. In certain circumstances the carry back period has been extended to the three...

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Growth Shares

Tax Bite – Growth Shares Growth shares are a popular form of equity incentive, particularly where enterprise management incentive (EMI) options are unavailable. This might be, for example, because: • The company carries on significant “excluded” or non-trading activities for EMI purposes, so does not meet the trading status requirement; • The incentive is to be in a subsidiary company; • The...

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Treatment of Discretions in relation to EMI Options

Treatment of Discretions in relation to EMI Options As you may be aware, HMRC have recently been taking a harder line on the treatment of the exercise of discretions in EMI option documents, with the result that they have been taking the view that where a discretion is exercised, an EMI option should be taxed as an unapproved option to the extent of the exercise of the discretion. It is common...

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EMI Options and Furlough

We have received the anticipated, but long-awaited, welcome confirmation that where an individual has not been required to work for reasons connected with coronavirus, this will not (in itself) mean that the individual fails to meet the working time requirement for EMI purposes. The confirmation comes by way of amendments to the Finance Bill 2020, which will receive Royal Assent this summer and...

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Top 10 EMI Pitfalls on an Exit

EMI options are a great way of delivering shares to employees. They are tax efficient, straightforward to implement and flexible. It is possible to agree the share value with HMRC before the options are granted (which is very attractive as that means there is certainty of tax treatment) and they can be put in place relatively cheaply. In most cases if a company qualifies to grant EMI options,...

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EMI Options and Covid-19

With all businesses more focussed at this time on cash reserves and potentially faced with having to make difficult decisions about their people, we are finding that companies are thinking about EMI options and the ability to reward employees with equity based awards. They are being used as an alternate remuneration strategy for example to compensate staff for temporarily taking a lower salary or...

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Top 10 Tax Points for Companies During the Coronavirus Crisis

We are getting an increased number of enquiries about EMI options, sometimes linked with a salary sacrifice. Companies are hoping to agree low values with HMRC as a result of the economic uncertainty (we will update you once we have seen how HMRC are responding to these valuation submissions) and we have also seen companies wanting to reduce salaries in return for EMI options – this raises some...

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