Matt Dyer, Managing Director LeasePlan UK has responded to Philip Hammond’s Autumn Statement on Salary Sacrifice for car schemes.
“The Chancellor’s decision to target cars gained through salary sacrifice is both destructive and disappointing for the motoring industry.
“We must also remember that going forward, HMRC have been clear that they will make no distinction between Salary Sacrifice and the practice of offering a cash allowance in lieu of a company car meaning this could affect up to 600K drivers. The vehicle rental and leasing industry contributes £24.9 billion a year to the UK economy, and company car leasing schemes are a large part of that success story – with over half of new car sales alone last year going into fleets.
We should also stress that these drivers are hard working, essential car users such as tradesmen and nurses, most of whom will be the JAMs that the government is so keen to provide for. Whilst we should take some solace from the fact that Ultra Low Emission Vehicles will remain unaffected and any existing arrangements will be protected until 2021, this is complicated by the fact that a new definition has been given for ‘Ultra Low’ and we will have to wait for the Finance Bill on the 5th December to see exactly what this means. It is also astonishing that April 2017 has remained as the implementation date, giving providers and employers comparatively no time at all to ensure they can comply with the new rules effectively, leading to unwelcome complexity for very little gain.”