In Dr Andrew Christie v Revenue Scotland [2022] FTSTC2, the First Tier Tribunal (FTT) for Scotland concluded Additional Dwelling Supplement (ADS) could only be reclaimed if the prior main residence had actually been physically been occupied as a residence. The fact that taxpayer could not occupy the property due to military posting did not change that position.

  • Dr Christie is a doctor in the British Army.
  • Whilst serving in Cyprus, Dr Christie’s wife purchased a property for the family to live in on their return to the UK.
  • Dr Christie was then posted to Canada and the property was rented out from August 2015 to December 2019.
  • Dr Christie was posted to Scotland in January 2020.
  • Once he knew about the posting to Scotland, Dr Christie purchased a second property in September 2019 on which Additional Dwelling Supplement (ADS) was paid in addition to the normal rates of LBTT.
  • The first property was sold on 19 February 2021 and Dr Christie claimed repayment of the ADS paid on the second property. 
  • Revenue Scotland rejected the claim as, despite the intention to reside in the property, the first property had not been their main residence in the 19 months prior to the purchase of the second property, Dr Christie and his family had been unable to occupy the property due to his military postings.
  • Dr Christie requested an internal review pointing out that the Armed Forces Covenant stated that serving personnel should face no disadvantage due to military service and the taxation system may be adapted to reflect their circumstances.
  • The internal review confirmed HMRC’s position.

Dr Christie appealed to the FTT who:

  • Expressed sympathy that Dr Christie could not occupy his one home in the UK due to his military posting.
  • While Dr Christie has been disadvantaged which was at odds with the Armed Forces Convention, the FTT was only able to apply the law as enacted by parliament.
  • The legislation surrounding the repayment of ADS was clear and its application was limited to subject conditions that Dr Christie had not met.

Comment

The Scottish Government has launched a Call for evidence that seeks views on the operation of the ADS. One would expect that the case of Dr Christie, emphasising the FTT's view that he has been discriminated against due to his military service, would be a prime example of feedback that could shape the policy going forward.

Useful guides on this topic

LBTT: Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT)
What is Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT)? What are the rules?

LBTT: Additional Dwelling Supplement
What is the Additional Dwelling Supplement for the Land and Buildings Transaction Tax? When does it apply? 

LBTT vs SDLT: Comparing the rates and additional dwellings charge
How does LBTT compare to SDLT? What are the key differences?

Call for evidence: Additional Dwelling Supplement
The Scottish Government has launched a call for evidence ‘The Land and Buildings Transaction Tax Additional Dwelling Supplement’ which seeks views on the operation of the Additional Dwelling Supplement (ADS).

External links

Dr Andrew Christie v Revenue Scotland [2022] FTSTC2


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