Clause 36 - Exemption of minor benefits: application to non-cash vouchers

Finance Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 4:30 pm on 16th May 2002.

Alert me about debates like this

Question proposed, That the clause stand part of the Bill.

Photo of Peter Luff Peter Luff Opposition Whip (Commons)

I had not intended to speak to the clause, but I wondered whether the Financial Secretary might tell me what it is about. The explanatory notes on the clause are not particularly explanatory. The summary begins,

''This clause'' and is followed by a series of sentences describing the clause. Under the heading, ''Details of the clause'', is written:

''Subsection (1) adds a new subsection (3) to section 155ZB.''

That is the same wording as is in the summary, and both paraphrase the clause itself.

Photo of Peter Luff Peter Luff Opposition Whip (Commons)

I hear the word ''simplification.'' Yesterday, or the day before, we voted in the House to rename the Joint Committee on Tax Simplification

Bills the Joint Committee on Tax Law Rewrite Bills. I should like the explanatory notes to be written by Ministers in their own words.

Photo of Mr Paul Boateng Mr Paul Boateng Financial Secretary, HM Treasury, The Financial Secretary to the Treasury

We shall have to get our shop stewards in on that one. Let me assist the hon. Gentleman. The clause is small and technical.

Photo of Mr Paul Boateng Mr Paul Boateng Financial Secretary, HM Treasury, The Financial Secretary to the Treasury

My hon. Friend the Paymaster General said ''perfectly formed'', but the hon. Member for Buckingham is not in his seat—but perhaps I am being unfair.

The clause will ensure that the exemption under the minor benefits legislation applies where a ticket or voucher is used. In the Finance Act 2000, we introduced a power to exempt from tax minor employer-provided benefits by regulation. The clause ensures that the exemption covers a situation in which to obtain the benefit the employee must show or exchange a ticket or pass, for example, for a lunchtime journey on a bus provided by an employer. Were that not necessary, the issue could be covered by regulation, but where it is necessary, there must be primary legislation.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause 36 ordered to stand part of the Bill.