Fleet News

Firms welcome HMRC guidance over ECO schemes

COMPANIES offering employee car ownership (ECO) schemes have welcomed the opportunity from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) to discuss how they are managed.

HMRC has asked companies to help develop its future tax policy for ECO schemes and some have already arranged meetings with the Government body (Fleet NewsNet, May 18).

Nick Sutton, chairman of Provecta, which provides ECO schemes, said: ‘Provecta is delighted to have been consulted by the HMRC with regard to its review of ECO schemes and a meeting has been arranged for June 6.

‘With 10 years of hard statistical evidence we will demonstrate the fiscal impact of drivers in an ECO scheme.’

He said they chose lower emission vehicles, their behaviour was better, they drove fewer miles and had fewer accidents.

The Government announced in the Budget that it was planning a review of its tax position on ECO schemes.

Gordon Calder-Jones, head of Alto, Masterlease’s ECO scheme, said: ‘It is important to remember that the HMRC has not said that it will tax ECO schemes, simply that it is carrying out a review and will listen to the arguments on both sides, a process that we welcome and will be participating in.

‘All of our ECO schemes have specific HMRC approval so no-one will suddenly have to pay benefit-in-kind tax on their vehicles.

‘It is likely that any decision on the future of ECO schemes and subsequent changes will be a lengthy process and there will be plenty of time to look at alternatives if and when a decision is made.’

  • HMRC is hosting a series of meetings on June 6, 7 and 27. Anyone interested in taking part in them should email pa.harris@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk
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