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Blow for Landlords’ Tax campaigners

Landlords campaigning to bring a judicial review of the new legislation which cuts tax relief for mortgage interest have been unsuccessful at the High Court.  The proposed changes, which will start to take effect from April 2017, will ultimately see the tax relief on financing costs reduced to 20% instead of the taxpayer’s top marginal rate.

The group, which is advised by Cherie Blair, is a crowd-funded coalition of individuals and organizations who represent more than 150,000 landlords.  The legal team argued that the new rules are unlawful on the basis that the restriction on individual landlords’ ability to deduct finance costs for tax purposes may constitute an unlawful grant of State aid to corporate landlords and owners of commercially let holiday homes, and may also breach the European Convention on Human Rights.

The group’s leaders said that “’We are outraged by the Court’s decision today.  It has completely missed the opportunity to protect tenants, landlords and the housing market from the disastrous consequences of Section 24.  Sadly it will be tenants who are hit hardest.  We will be launching a range of lobbying, media and grass-roots activism measures over the coming days and weeks.”

Author – George Lovell