New home owners warned over tax refund claims
New home owners are being warned about cold calls from rogue tax repayment agents advising them to make speculative Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) refund claims, which could leave them with large tax bills.
The warning comes after a recent spate of stamp duty refund claims to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) failed to meet very specific criteria.
The agents have been known to call new property owners after finding them through land registry records and property search websites, promising money back on “unknowingly overpaid” stamp duty.
Recent analysis undertaken by HMRC suggests that up to a third of claims for “multiple dwelling relief” refunds were incorrect.
HMRC raised inquiries on these claims, but sometimes that is after the agent has taken their fee, leaving the home owner to pick up the difference. Incorrect refund claims must be repaid with interest, with some potentially facing penalties as well.
Anyone approached about a stamp duty refund claim should check with their original conveyancer, take independent professional advice and check HMRC’s guidance by searching “Stamp Duty Land Tax” on GOV.UK. You can also contact our helpline on 0300 2003 510.
In a recent example, a letter from a rogue agent suggested a home owner may have overpaid £60,000 worth of stamp duty. The agent claimed the home could be designated as two properties, despite it clearly being one. This is not an isolated example – other cases include:
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