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Theatre Tax Relief

  • 2 min read

The Theatre Tax Relief (TTR) is a relief that theatre production companies can claim if they produce, run and close theatre productions. It was introduced in the 2014 Finance Bill

You need three things to qualify:

  1. You must actively engage in the decision making at all stages of the production
  2. Your creative, artistic and technical contribution to the production must be “effective”
  3. You negotiate and pay for the rights, goods or services of the production

Who is eligible for Theatre Tax Relief?

To be eligible to claim TTF, you must be running a commercial production for a majority paying audience. Also, at least 25% of your core spend on the production must occur within the European Economic Area (EEA).

Your corporation tax must also be up to date to be eligible to claim. If it isn’t, the relief will be offset against your debt. Put simply, HMRC takes any money you owe from the relief before they pay you. 

What happens if I abandon the production?

If you abandon the production – i.e. if you no longer go ahead with it – you can still claim the relief. You claim for what you spent before abandoning. If the production was eligible for the relief immediately before abandonment, you should still be fine to claim. 

Be aware that your production will only be considered abandoned if it was originally planned and prepared to be a theatre production in front of a paying audience. But down the line, this intention was changed. 

What do I claim?

You claim TTR via your usual CT600 corporate tax returnAnd you can claim whichever is lower of these two spends:

  • 80% of total core expenditure – and this must relate to the production, running and closing of the production
  • The amount of core expenditure on goods or services that are provided from the EEA

Read more about what you can claim with TTR on HMRC’s website.

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