Service areas

There is a wealth of complex tax issues which businesses and their owners face, particularly as a result of ever-changing tax legislation.

Our team of tax lawyers are fully conversant with the business tax issues that may affect our clients at both corporate and director/shareholder level. We help our clients make the best use of tax efficiencies and savings through strategic advice tailored specifically to their individual requirements.

We act for a varied client base including entrepreneurs, owner-managed businesses and both UK resident and non-UK resident individuals.

We have particular expertise advising in connection with:

Real estate: many individuals and most businesses lease or purchase property. These transactions can have a number of related tax consequences and the team is experienced in advising in relation to Capital Gains Tax, Stamp Duty Land Tax, the Construction Industry Scheme, Capital Allowances and VAT. In particular we have expertise in:

  • the tax consequences of agricultural, commercial and residential property transactions and how these may be legitimately mitigated
  • transfers of going concerns
  • additional tax charges applying to high value properties owned by companies and other non-natural persons
  • the tax considerations arising from strategic land development (such as equalisation, overage and anti-avoidance rules imposing income tax rather than Capital Gains Tax).

Corporate transactions: we provide pragmatic tax advice to a range of businesses, including companies, partnerships, family businesses and farming entities. We regularly advise in relation to:

  • structuring early stage businesses in a flexible manner that meets their immediate needs and potential future requirements
  • corporate reorganisations, de-mergers and restructuring (including company purchase of own shares) in order to meet the commercial requirements of the business itself and its shareholders
  • management buyouts (including employment related security issues and the possible application of the loans to participators rules)
  • the tax consequences of selling and purchasing companies, including drafting and negotiating tax warranties and tax covenants
  • Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS) and Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS).

Employment taxation: we advise businesses in relation to:

  • retaining and compensating their employees using, where appropriate, employee share schemes and employee benefit trusts and the associated tax consequences (including employment related security issues)
  • the tax consequences in making payments on the termination of employment
  • the tax consequences of salary or bonus sacrifice.

Tax disputes: Birketts’ Tax Disputes Team has in-depth experience advising and successfully defending individuals and business against the onslaught of HMRC enquiries, investigations and, more recently, accelerated payment notices (where DOTAS schemes have been used). Our Tax Disputes Team has a record of successfully resolving taxpayer’s disputes with HMRC: by way of negotiated settlement and representing and conducting taxpayers’ appeals at the tax tribunals.

Tax clearances: we regularly prepare applications for statutory and non-statutory tax clearances on a range of taxes and enjoy an excellent success rate in obtaining a positive response from HMRC, including in circumstances where other advisers have not been successful in obtaining a clearance.

Leading Firm Legal 500 2016

Birketts LLP provides ‘good response times and quality advice without London prices'.

Legal 500 UK 2018