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Readers’ forum: Tax treatment of one-off employee reward payments

08 March 2022
Issue: 4831 / Categories: Forum & Feedback
Rewarding employees

My client is about to sell his company for a seven-figure sum and wants to give a group of long-standing employees some of the sale proceeds as an acknowledgment of their contribution to the business over the years.

We had discussed putting in a share incentive arrangement some years ago but my client never wanted anything as formal as this. He understands that the amounts given to these employees will be taxable but I am unsure about the mechanics particularly as some of the individuals may not be kept on by the new owners.

Does he simply give the employees the money and tell them to declare it to HMRC (I doubt that many of them are within self assessment at the moment) or does he have a PAYE/NIC obligation?

If so how does he manage this given than he will have no access to employees’ codes...

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