Recent amendments to the Duties Act 2000 have now imposed duty on certain leasing transactions. The amendments became law on 7 July 2009 with retrospective effect to 21 November 2008.
Duty is now chargeable on the granting of any lease for which there is consideration other than rent and usual property outgoings. If a tenant pays the landlord a premium to obtain the lease, a transfer of a lease, an option or right of first refusal to purchase the land, duty is chargeable on the amount paid or the market value of the property whichever is the greater.
Consideration may include non monetary consideration and applies to residential, commercial and retail leases.
Leases which have been entered into after 21 November 2008 and before 7 July 2009 may be submitted for assessment of duty until 7 October 2009 without penalty.