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BMA fights capital gains tax changes

The BMA has teamed up with the British Dental Association (BDA) to oppose the Government's overhaul of Capital Gains Tax rules.

The Chancellor's controversial plan to scrap taper relief in April would leave GPs and dentists who own their premises significantly worse off when they sell their property, the two associations have warned.

Dr Hamish Meldrum, BMA chair and Dr Susie Sanderson, chair of the BDA's Executive Board have written to Alistair Darling, Chancellor of the Exchequer and have said the move will seriously jeopardising GPs' and dentists' retirement plans.

Taper relief means that sales of assets which have been owned for more than two years are taxed at 10%. The new arrangements would see the introduction of a flat rate of 18% regardless of how long an asset had been owned.

The Chancellor has since offered 100% tax relief on the first £100,000 of any capital gain.

However, given the significant amount of capital invested in premises, the BMA and BDA have said that the proposals could jeopardise the retirement plans of thousands of their members.

Dr Hamish Meldrum said: ‘Not only is this change extremely unfair on GPs, who over the years have invested heavily in their practices to the benefit of patients, in worst case scenarios it could make it harder for patients to access services. It would be understandable if a practice partner nearing retirement brought forward that date because of this change and the government needs to realise the negative impact it could have on healthcare.'

Dr Susie Sanderson added: ‘This is a destabilising move at a time when we need more certainty in the system, not less.'

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