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Stamp duty

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 What is Stamp Duty?

Stamp Duty is a tax on documents relating to immovable properties, stocks or shares. Examples of such documents are :

1) Lease / Tenancy Agreements

These are documents that are prepared and signed when you rent a property. Stamp Duty is calculated on the actual rent or market rent whichever is higher.  The person who leases or rents the property (lessee or tenant) is responsible for paying Stamp Duty.

2) Acceptance to Option to Purchase / Sale & Purchase Agreements

These are documents that are prepared and signed when you buy or sell your property. Stamp Duty is payable on the actual price or market price whichever is higher.  The buyer is responsible for paying Buyer’s Stamp Duty.  Where Seller’s Stamp Duty is applicable, the seller is responsible for paying Seller’s Stamp Duty.

 3) Mortgages

These are documents that are prepared and signed when you obtain a loan from banks for your property purchase.  Stamp Duty is payable on the loan amount.  The person who obtains the loan (mortgagor) is responsible for paying the Stamp Duty on the mortgage document.

 4) Share Transfer Documents

These are documents that are prepared and signed when you buy or sell shares. Stamp Duty is payable on the actual price or net asset value of the shares whichever is higher. The person who buys the shares (transferee) is responsible for paying Stamp Duty on the Share Transfer document.

 If you have a document that relates to more than one matter, it will be charged separately for each matter. This means that more than one set of Stamp Duty is to be paid on that document.

 Examples include :

  1.  Sale and lease-back of property
  2.  Sale and buy-back of property
  3.  Lease with a contract for sale of fixtures
  4.  An instrument whereby more than one property is leased to the same tenant and where the terms and conditions for the lease of each of the properties are different

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 When should I pay Stamp Duty?

Once the document is signed and dated, Stamp Duty needs to be paid :

  1. Within 14 days after the date of the document if the document is signed in Singapore or
  2. Within 30 days after the date of its receipt in Singapore if the document is signed overseas

You can pay Stamp Duty easily using our e-Stamping system. To stamp your document online, click here.

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 Why should I pay Stamp Duty?

 It is an offence to use a document which Stamp Duty has not been paid on.  If IRAS detects a document where Stamp Duty has not been paid, a penalty of up to 4 times will be imposed.

 In addition, a document where Stamp Duty is paid can be admitted as evidence in the court in cases of disagreements.

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 Which are the documents that I need not pay Stamp Duty?

Examples of documents where Stamp Duty is not payable :

  • Service contracts not in connection with the granting of a lease

  • Deed of Appointment of Trustees - where it does not involve vesting of interest

  • Loan agreements not relating to properties and shares

  • Settlement not relating to properties and shares such as settlement

  • Letters of Guarantee / Indemnity

  • Statutory Declaration, Affidavit

  • Assignment of intangible assets such as Goodwill, Trademark and Patents

  • Assignment of book debts / receivables (eg. sale proceeds)

  • Promissory Note

  • Letters of Appointment /  Revocation of Power of Attorney

  • Will

  • Hire Purchase Agreement

  • Charter-party

  • Declaration to change from Joint Tenancy to Tenancy in Common of equal shares

  • Declaration to hold as Joint Tenants by Tenants in Common of equal shares

  • Fixed and nominal duty documents (dated on and after 19 Feb 2011). For more details, please refer to our e-Tax Guide on Stamp Duty: Removal of Fixed and Nominal Duties (Second Edition)  (116 KB)

  

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Last Updated on 2 April 2014


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