Companies or advisers concerned with Enterprise Management Incentives (EMI) plans who are considering granting further share options should review HMRC’s recent bulletin regarding EU State aid approval for the EMI scheme by visiting: Employment securities bulletin No 27 (April 2018)
EMI schemes are technically a form of state aid to companies who grant EMI options. The tax reliefs offered by HMRC through the scheme therefore require approval from the EU commission and today, the current EU State Aid approval has expired.
The bulletin contains information on the current status of the approval application and the effect the expiration of the approval might have on EMI options granted after today. In short, companies should be very wary of granting options from tomorrow (7 April) until HMRC confirms that approval has been renewed as there is a risk that such options may be treated as non-tax advantaged options.
We will update our website with any further information provided by HMRC on this matter.