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Make the Losses Work

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Newsletter issue - March 2013.

The value of shares quoted on the stock market has risen recently. This may encourage you to sell some investments before the end of this tax year (5 April 2013) in order to use your annual capital gains exemption and to soak up any capital losses. Any gains covered by the exemption (currently £10,600 per person) or capital losses are free of capital gains tax.

We can't advise you on what to sell, but we can help you calculate the level of your capital losses and potential gains. It is essential that you tell your financial adviser or stockbroker how much capital losses you have already realised, so future disposals can be made to meet the level of those capital losses.

If you have forgotten to declare a disposal which made a capital loss on your tax return form, there may be no harm done, but you need to submit a claim for the loss before it can be set against a later gain. The deadline for claiming capital losses is now four years from the end of the tax year in which the loss arose, so you can still claim for losses made in 2008/09 and later tax years. We can help you with these claims.

Don't forget you can crystallise a capital loss on shares which you still hold, but are now worth nothing or almost nothing. This is called a negligible value claim, and we can help you with that.