The Government has published the Finance Bill 2012, in which tax measures announced in Budget 2011 and 2012 come into force.
This year's Bill includes ongoing measures to maintain the Government's deficit reduction strategy, whilst supporting growth and employment. It also hopes to undertake significant tax reforms.
Key legislation in the Bill includes:
- The basic rate band for income tax will decrease to £34,370 for the tax year £2012/13.
- The tax-free personal allowance for those aged under 65 will be raised to £8,105 for the tax year 2012/13.
- The top rate of income tax will reduce to 45 per cent from 6 April 2013.
The corporation tax rate will reduce to 24 per cent from 1 April this year and to 23 per cent on 1 April 2013.
- A commitment to tackle over £1 billion of tax avoidance and evasion, including tightening rules around stamp duty and inheritance tax evasion through off shore trusts.
- An ongoing strategy to simplify the tax system including the elderly and small businesses.
The Government has committed to confirm the majority of Finance Bill measures at least three months prior to introduction, with 400 pages of legislation published in the draft Finance Bill in December 2011. It also aimed to open up the Bill to thorough consultation and scrutiny.
The exchequer secretary to the Treasury, David Gauke, said: "This year's Finance Bill shows just how committed the coalition Government is to rewarding work, simplifying the tax system and tacking the nation's debts.
"The measures in this Bill will create a tax system which supports a strong economy and promotes a fair society. In other words, a tax system that works for Britain".