Can a firearm be purchased through your business?

ChrisWill184

Well-Known Member
Looking for some advice please from anyone in a similar situation. I am fortunate that my stalking leads to an income for me now but to continue progressing this income I need another rifle - basically something I can put a moderator on as I don’t want to alter my only other deer rifle.

The question is, can I buy the rifle through my business account? The reason for the question is that if the firearm is bought, does it then become a company asset? If it is an asset, can a company hold a firearm as an asset? A company does not have a licence. If I purchase the rifle and claim the expenses back personally, am I liable to pay any personal tax on this as the money could be classed as a gift? If I claim the expense, is that the company basically buying the asset and I am back to the original problem?

I have asked the likes of BASC but had a pants response. Surely this is the situation that Gamekeepers are in all over the country so would just like a straightforward answer.

thanks
 

topscots1

Well-Known Member
I would say you claim the purchase back as part of your tax return, I have a serving military friend with an accountant wife, she claims any military history books, polish, haircuts and the odd suit in his tax return. I was astounded but all legal and above board.
 

enfieldspares

Well-Known Member
I knew of a man who's Purdey was accounted for as a "precision levelling tool" which, as he was quite good with it, was near the truth.

But I'd treat it as any other tool that you'd need as part of your business, the more so if it'll be used mostly as an Estate Rifle. An Argocat, a 4x4, a set of binoculars, a two way radio, even drag ropes and knives through to a chiller I'd see a rifle as no different. Is it's reason to need it as part of the equipment needed for the stalking business or not?

Same as "gifting" any of the above from you as J Smith Stalking Ltd to J Smith the individual would apply to the Argocat and etc., etc.. That the rifle requires to be possessed on an FAC is irrelevant in that respect. It has to be recorded somewhere as to who possesses it and it being held on an RFD authority won't allow it to be used as an Estate Rifle.
 
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mealiejimmy

Well-Known Member
If the new rifle is going to be a "tool of your trade" -and I expect it will be, then the cost of purchase of the rifle and any accessories you need for it (moderator, scope, mounts, bipod, gun slip etc) and the cost of running it (i.e ammunition) are a legitimate business expense.
When you complete your annual tax return, simply list the costs in the business expenses part of the return.
If you're VAT registered, you can also reclaim the VAT on the rifle and all the other bits.

Cheers

Bruce
 

Essex stalker

Well-Known Member
I see no reason why not, to me it's a legitimate expense that you incur through running your business, in fact without it you haven't a business.
would think it's simply an asset to be depreciated on an annual basis
 

ChrisWill184

Well-Known Member
Just ask your accountant!



Tim.243

My accountant is a shooting man and didn’t know which is why I ask. More the ‘who owns it’ aspect to make sure it’s all above board. As I have to buy it to benefit ‘the business’ and is solely used for this purpose, be it taking out clients, selling the venison, using it for paid pest control, I don’t see why I should not be fully reimbursed for it. Would like to think that the business could purchase this equipment for me and then pass it across for my ownership without having to pay any gift tax etc. It’s a bit of an odd one. Kind of like a company car where you need a licence to drive but in that respect, no licence is needed to own.
 

Essex stalker

Well-Known Member
The value will depreciate over a few years, the company should be able to sell the asset to you in a few years when it's residual value is low and hence no real tax to pay
 

Highlandsjohn

Well-Known Member
I would say you claim the purchase back as part of your tax return, I have a serving military friend with an accountant wife, she claims any military history books, polish, haircuts and the odd suit in his tax return. I was astounded but all legal and above board.

If it's for use in your line of work and earning a living,yes. If you use it ,say, half the time for your sporting stalking,claim half. Just the same as a vehicle used between business and pleasure.
We can sometimes pi$$ the taxman off by claiming everything we purchase,but if it's for your job and cost you money it should be claimed like any other asset.
Gamekeepers will have personal expenses,especially if self employed, but in most cases the employer/estate will be claiming it as he or she will be an employee. There are plenty on here that can chime in with various experiences. Be guided by your accountant,that's why we pay them so much.john
Appologies topscots1, I inadvertently quoted you by mistake. j.
 
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Essex stalker

Well-Known Member
I don't think claiming it as an expense is an issue but who owns it could be, I can't see how the company could buy it or sell it to you as it would have a certificate to enter the details on.
 

slider

Well-Known Member
Ni problem.

When I was farming rifles, shotguns and ammo were bought through the business a tools from pest control. Loss of ability to reclaim the VAT on ammo is one of the few things I miss from my former life!
 

paul o'

Well-Known Member
I had both the A.I 338's and RPA interceptor as Engineering parts on the vat receipt and clamed it back as they were training aids .
 

Erik Hamburger

Well-Known Member
Anything you use for your business is an allowable expense, so you can offset it against sales. Providing you run a registered business. (Sole trader, partnership, Ltd Co, etc.)

Interestingly I had a discussion with my Accountant about this subject earlier this week.
We run a B&B (our main business) but my wife is also a beekeeper and sells some of the honey. I hunt/stalk in my free time but sell some of the venison from home (Hunter's Exemption).
The Accountant suggested that any honey/venison sales are added to the B&B sales; and that any 'allowable expenses' related to beekeeping and hunting can be offset in the accounts against sales.
As both the beekeeping and the stalking are hobbies (OK, paid hobbies...) things have to be 'reasonable and proportional'. For example a cost of say £2K for new rifle or Thermal Scope or NV equipment I would book as 75% private and 25% business. Therefore the 'allowable expense' would be 25% of £2K or £500. So £500 would show up in my business accounts as a cost. This offsets £500 of sales, over which I would otherwise have paid Tax at either the lower of higher rate.. So the 'saving' is 20-40% of £500, or £100-£200 depending on your Tax status.
Therefore the answer to your question is YES, providing you are reasonable and things are proportionate. What you don't want is HMRC to challenge your figures and dispute them. I have always found HMRC is actually quite reasonable as well in their dealings with small businesses.
 
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