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UK Film Tax Relief – five common questions

What makes the UK attractive to Film Markers?

17 Mar 2021

There are several factors that make the UK attractive to film makers, one of which is UK Film Tax Relief, a favourable tax incentive which is available to British qualifying films of any budget level.

Alliotts Media team are experienced in applying for the incentive, over the last three year we’ve successfully applied for, and secured, over £40m in film tax refunds on behalf of our clients.

We’ve noticed a trend in the common reasons why there are delays in having a claim approved by HMRC.  So, we’d like to help you avoid some of the these pitfalls and potential delays to your claim for film tax relief by sharing our experience with you:

  1. Make sure that the name of the film and the name of the film on the BFI documents are the same – avoid using working titles at this stage.
  2. A breakdown of the legal and General costs within core expenditure – Make it clear how much has been spent, and what you’ve spent it on. Being specific will help avoid additional questions.
  3. In order for a film to qualify for Film Tax Relief for a particular accounting period, the intention must be that the film will be subject to ‘theatrical release’ at the end of that period.The term ‘theatrical release’ means exhibition to the paying public at a commercial cinema.You’ll need to provide proof of this intention which could include the following:a. Any documentary evidence which supports that the production was intended for theatrical release eg, this could include, but is not limited to, a contract with a venue and/or any emails or correspondence showing an intention to seek a contract to present the film in a cinema.b. Confirmation of when filming will commence.
  4.   Details of any loan agreements and/or investment agreements
  5. Names of all the investors in the production, including the amounts invested by each one listed.

Many film makers are time pressured and decide to hand the application process over to professionals who can take the administrative burden away while then work on their productions.

If you need help in making a claim for Film Tax Relief please contact us for advice.

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