UK General Election 2024: The Key Tax Pledges

Ahead of the General Election on 4 July, SRLV’s partner Steve Wren and director Kieron Clement-Smith review the key tax pledges made by Labour, the Conservatives, Liberal Democrats, Green and Reform parties, as part of their election manifestos.

A commitment not to increase certain taxes and stamp out perceived avoidance have been key themes of the 2024 election; with the main parties ruling out increases to revenue raisers, such as Income Tax, VAT and National Insurance, whilst promoting their tax reform plans for areas including non-domicile tax.


At the time of writing, a Labour win is still, according to the polls, the expected outcome following the General Election next week. Should this become a reality, Labour has said they will publish a roadmap for business taxation covering the next parliament, within the first six months of forming a new government.  They have also announced plans for a single annual Budget in the autumn.


  • Not to increase Income Tax, National Insurance or VAT generally, whilst capping the main rate of Corporation Tax at the current level of 25% for the entire parliament. Furthermore, they have committed to respond to tax changes made by other countries, if they pose a risk to UK competitiveness.
  • Retain a permanent full expensing system for capital investment and the annual investment allowance for small businesses, whilst giving firms more clarity on what qualifies for allowances
  • For those working in private equity, to treat “carried interest” as taxable income rather than gains
  • To end the VAT exemption and business rates relief which apply to private schools
  • In England, to replace the business rates system and raise the same amount of revenue by levelling the playing field between high street and online retailers
  • To continue the government’s reform of the non-domicile regime as announced in the Spring Budget 2024 (primarily to remove offshore trust inheritance tax protections). Labour has also confirmed previously that they would consult on an exception for foreign residents present in the UK for short periods “to continue to attract top international talent”.
  • Increase the Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) surcharge for non-residents by a further 1%. The current surcharge is 2% on the purchase of residential property in England and Northern Ireland by a non-UK resident purchaser.
  • To abandon previous plans to reintroduce the pension lifetime allowance limit

Undoubtedly, Labour’s highest profile tax policy is its plan to reclassify private schools as businesses for tax purposes, so they are subject to the same VAT and business rates.  Many commentators agree that reform of this kind would need to be announced as part of the next Budget and is likely to require an Act of Parliament before it becomes law, so 2025/26 is probably the earliest academic year that would be impacted by this change.

Labour’s other high-profile policy is to end the existing non-domicile tax system, in line with the changes announced by the Conservatives in their Spring Budget. Labour’s own policy was first published as part of their 2019 election manifesto and included a pledge to consult on an exception for foreign residents present in the UK for short periods (to ensure the UK continues to attract “international talent”). Recent comments made by Labour’s Shadow Chancellor Rachel Reeves indicate that this remains their position.


The omission of Inheritance Tax from the Conservative manifesto surprised many commentators; however, the bulk of the party’s tax pledges had been widely anticipated, following Jeremy Hunt’s announcements in this year’s Spring Budget.


  • Not to increase Corporation Tax
  • Reduce National Insurance by 2%
  • Not to increase the ‘rate’ of Income Tax
  • Change the higher income child benefit charge by rebasing it on household income
  • Not to increase Capital Gains Tax (CGT) and to exempt landlords who sell properties to tenants from CGT (for a two-year window)
  • Increase Stamp Duty thresholds for first-time buyers to £425,000
  • To consider extending the ‘full expensing’ policy to leasing (as soon as fiscal conditions allow)
  • Allow more companies to be considered medium-sized by revising the employee threshold limit (a medium-sized company must have fewer than 500 employees in general, to qualify). This is relevant for UK tax purposes, such as transfer pricing exemptions and DPT, and various tax incentive schemes.
  • Retain key tax incentives, including the Enterprise Investment Scheme, SEED Enterprise Investment Scheme, Venture Capital Trusts, Business Asset Disposal Relief, Agricultural Property Relief, Business Relief and maintain R&D tax reliefs
  • Over time, to increase the multiplier on distribution warehouses that support online shopping



  • Not to increase Income Tax
  • ‘Reform’ and increase Capital Gains Tax
  • Reverse the tax cuts put in place for big banks by the Conservatives (this would revise the Bank Surcharge and Bank Levy revenues back to 2016 levels, in real terms)
  • Reform or abolish business rates by replacing them with a Commercial Landowner Levy
  • Increase the Digital Services Tax on social media firms and other tech giants from 2% to 6%
  • Introduce a 4% tax on the share buyback schemes of FTSE-100 listed companies


  • Not to increase the main rates of Corporation Tax
  • Introduce a Wealth Tax of 1% annually on assets of more than £10m and 2% on assets above £1bn
  • Reform Capital Gains Tax to align the rates paid by taxpayers on income and taxable gains
  • Align the tax rates on investment income with tax and National Insurance rates
  • Remove the Upper Earnings Limit for National Insurance
  • Equate the rate of pension tax relief with Income Tax so everyone would only get tax relief of 20% and reform Inheritance Tax to remove tax ‘loopholes’
  • Advocate windfall taxes where there is evidence that market distortions are creating risk-free additional profits.


  • Abolish Income Tax below £20,000
  • Raise the Income Tax higher rate threshold to £70,000
  • Raise the minimum profits threshold for sole traders to £100,000
  • Reduce the main Corporation Tax rate from 25% to 20% and to 15% (from year five)
  • Remove ‘IR35’/off-payroll working rules
  • Abolish Inheritance Tax on estates worth less than £2m


Clearly, we need to await the result of next week’s election and the publication of further policy details before we can assess the full impact of any future tax changes.

We will be publishing further client updates following the election result next week, but if you have queries on any of the issues raised in this article or tax changes more generally, please contact Steve Wren or Kieron Clement-Smith.


This material is published for the information of clients and contacts. It provides only an overview of the regulations in force at the date of publication, and no action should be taken without consulting the detailed legislation or seeking professional advice. Therefore, no responsibility for loss occasioned by any person acting or refraining from action as a result of the material can be accepted by the authors or SRLV LLP.