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Change to the stock transfer form

A new certificate has been added to the reverse of the stock transfer form, to be completed when a share transfer is ‘otherwise’ exempt from stamp duty or no chargeable consideration is given for the transfer. HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) guidance has been updated to provide advice on completing this new certificate.

The change to the form stemmed from practical problems that the legal sector and Registrars have been encountering since the changes made to the form in 2008 as a result of the abolition of stamp duty fixed charges. Whilst reviewing the form to deal with these practical difficulties, we decided to update the form more generally to address the problem that Registrars do not feel that the form provides enough information for them to fulfil their obligations under section 17 of the Stamp Act 1891 (which, in turn, leads to a number of rejected forms and additional work for both Registrars and the legal sector). HMRC worked with representatives of both groups to see how to reduce the number of rejected forms, which resulted in the addition of the new certificate.

The new forms will be available from suppliers from 6 April 2012 and it is recommended that the new form is used for all transfers on or after that date. Old versions of the form will continue to be accepted until 5 September 2012. Where the old version of the form is being used for a transfer which is otherwise exempt from stamp duty or for which no chargeable consideration is given it is recommended that you either:

  • add the certificate manually to the reverse of the form and complete and sign it
  • provide the Registrar with further details, including relevant supporting documentation, about the transfer and why it is exempt from stamp duty

Failure to do either of the above may result in the form being rejected and a delay in the shares being registered in the name of the new owner.

Stamp Duty on shares