Borrowing from your own company

If you are the owner of a company it is a breach of Company Law, except in specific circumstances, for you to borrow money from your company. Ironically there are no fines payable if you break this particular aspect of company law! However there are a number of tax consequences, two of which are outlined below.

Benefit in kind

If a director’s loan is overdrawn by more than £5,000 (you owe the company money) you will be deemed to benefit from this arrangement and suffer a benefit in kind charge as a result. This charge can be avoided if you allow the company to charge you interest on the overdrawn position. The rate of interest charged needs to be at the official HMRC rate or higher. This will of course increase the amount you owe if simply charged to your loan account and will potentially increase the company’s taxable profits.
Corporation tax

If the overdrawn position continues for more than 9 months after the end of a relevant accounting period your company’s corporation tax bill will be increased by 25% of the loan amount. For instance if the company year end was 31 December 2007 and at that time the overdrawn director’s loan amounted to £20,000, and this amount was still outstanding at 1 October 2008, you would have to pay over an extra £5,000 in corporation tax at that later date. This Section 419 liability could be reclaimed if the loan was subsequently repaid – the tax paid would actually be repaid 9 months after the accounting year end, during which the loan repayment occurs. This rule applies whether you are a director or not, and even if the loan is made to the spouse of the shareholder for instance.

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