Goodbye, and good riddance to Form 42

Unlike the decision to drop the OFR, plans to save hundreds of thousands of
small businesses from the burden of filing an infamous tax form have been

The chancellor announced revisions to enable many businesses to escape Form
42, which relates to employee-share awards, in his CBI conference speech on

The form had been introduced to reduce unapproved share schemes -­ but
controversially led to more than 300,000 businesses being forced into filing.

HM Revenue & Customs denied suggestions that the form was so unnecessary
it had ‘thousands of dusty completed Form 42s in cupboards’ .

Anita Monteith, technical manager at the ICAEW, said: ‘If what Brown says
proves to be practically true, it will make a huge difference. Just as long as
it’s clear that many small companies won’t have to fill in the form’.

The form related specifically to ‘founder shares’. Penalties for not filling
it in could have led to companies facing ludicrous punishments.

Welcoming the change, Andrew Hubbard, a tax director at Tenon, warned the
revised 52-page guidance for Form 42 contained 10 pages of notes that would
still have to be checked to make sure a company is no longer eligible.

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