How to gain best tax relief for livery diversification?

Oct 27, 2022
Author: Dan Wood
Dan acts as a commercial partner for a wide range of clients. Dan specialises in advising businesses in the agriculture sector.
tax relief for livery businesses

Livery businesses are particularly difficult to structure from a tax perspective and it is advised that owners should spend time reviewing agreements with their clients on a regular basis to ensure that they are being as tax efficient as possible. This is in order to qualify for VAT exemptions and inheritance tax relief.


VAT exemption

One reason why it is important to do this is because livery services can be exempt from VAT if structured correctly which means there will be no chargeable VAT to customers.


How does this work?

For the whole supply to be VAT-exempt, livery owners will need to offer their clients:

  • A ‘grant of an exclusive right’ or a ‘licence to the specific stable’
  • Ancillary care elements

In addition to this livery owners will need to ensure that an option to tax election has not been made over the stables. Where the exclusive right or license is granted first and foremost. The VAT position will not be affected by the level of care provided. It is important to note that this only applies to specialist yards including stud farms, racehorse stables and schooling stables.


Inheritance tax

If your asset qualifies for business property relief, 100% inheritance tax relief will be available.


How do livery owners qualify for business property relief?

If livery owners only offer grazing agreements and horse owners take full responsibility for their horses then your business will not qualify for business property relief because this is viewed as a passive activity. However, if your business offers additional services such as health checks and feeding etc, then it is more likely that your business will qualify for the relief. If you would like to find out more about business property relief please visit:


How can we help?

At Hawsons our experts will be able to advise you on your livery business and how you could take advantage of these VAT and inheritance tax reliefs.

Hawsons has a dedicated team of specialist agriculture accountants in Sheffield, Doncaster and Northampton. We know that farming isn’t just a business; it’s a way of life.

Dan Wood

Partner, Doncaster

Chris Hill

Senior Partner, Sheffield

David Cairns

Tax Partner, Northampton

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