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February 9, 2021

Rationalisation of provision of transfer of capital asset to partner on dissolution or reconstitution

by CA Shivam Jaiswal in Budget, Income Tax

Rationalisation of provision of transfer of capital asset to partner on dissolution or reconstitution

The existing provisions of section 45 of the Act inter alia, provides that any profits or gains arising from the transfer of a capital asset shall be chargeable to income-tax under the head Capital gains and shall be deemed to be the income of the previous year in which such transfer takes place. Further sub-section (4) of the said section, provides that the profits or gains arising from the transfer of a capital asset by way of distribution of capital assets on the dissolution of a firm or other association of persons or body of individuals (not being a company or a co-operative society)or otherwise, shall be chargeable to tax as the income of such firm or other association of persons or body of individuals of the previous year in which the said transfer takes place. Further, the fair market value of the asset on the date of such transfer shall be deemed to be the full value of the consideration for the purposes of section 48.

In this regard, it has been noticed that there is uncertainty regarding applicability of provisions of aforesaid sub-section to a situation where assets are revalued or self generated assets are recorded in the books of accounts and payment is made to partner or member which is in excess of his capital contribution.

Hence, it is proposed to substitute the existing sub-section (4) of section 45 of the Act with a new sub-section (4) and also insert a new sub-section (4A) to this section. New proposed sub-section (4) of section 45 of the Act applies in a case where a specified person who receives during the previous year any capital asset at the time of dissolution or reconstitution of the specified entity. The capital asset represents the balance in the capital account of such specified person in the books of the specified entity at the time of its dissolution or reconstitution. In this situation, the profit and gains arising from the receipt of such capital asset by the specified person shall be chargeable to income-tax as income of the specified entity under the head “capital gains” and shall be deemed to be the income of such specified entity of the previous year in which the capital asset was received by the specified person.

For the purposes of section 48 of the Act, the fair market value of the capital asset on the date of such receipt shall be deemed to be the full value of the consideration received or accruing as a result of the transfer of the capital asset. The balance in the capital account of the specified person in the books of account of the specified entity is to be calculated without taking into account increase in the capital account of the specified person due to revaluation of any asset or due to self-generated goodwill or any other self-generated asset.

New proposed section sub-section (4A) of section 45 of the Act applies in a case where a specified person receives during the previous year any money or other asset at the time of dissolution or reconstitution of the specified entity. The money or other asset is required to be in excess of the balance in the capital account of such specified person in the books of accounts of the specified entity at the time of its dissolution or reconstitution. In this situation, the profits or gains arising from the receipt of such money or other asset by the specified person shall be chargeable to income-tax as income of the specified entity under the head “Capital gains” and shall be deemed to be the income of such specified entity of the previous year in which the money or other asset was received by the specified person. For the purposes of section 48 of the Act,

  • value of the money or the fair market value of other asset on the date of such receipt shall be deemed to be the full value of the consideration received or accruing as a result of the transfer of the capital asset; and
  • the balance in the capital account of the specified person in the books of accounts of the specified entity at the time of its dissolution or reconstitution shall be deemed to be the cost of acquisition.

The balance in the capital account of the specified person in the books of account of the specified entity is to be calculated without taking into account increase in the capital account of the specified person due to revaluation of any asset or due to self generated goodwill or any other self-generated asset.

For the purposes of these two sub-sections,-

  • “specified person is proposed to be defined as a person who is partner of a firm or member of other association of persons or body of individuals (not being a company or a cooperative society), in any previous year;
  • “specified entity” is proposed to be defined as a firm or other association of persons or body of individuals (not being a company or a cooperative society);and
  • “self-generated goodwill” and “self – generated assets” are proposed to be defined as goodwill or asset, as the case may be, which has been acquired without incurring any cost for purchase or which has been generated during the course of the business or profession.

Consequential amendment is also proposed in section 48 of the Act to provide that in case of specified entity, the amount included in the total income of such specified entity under sub-section (4A) of section 45 which is attributable to the capital asset being transferred, shall be reduced from the full value of the consideration to compute income charged under the head “capital gains”. This is to be calculated in the manner to be prescribed later. This is to mitigate the double taxation which may have happened but for this provision in a situation where an asset which was revalued and for which income under the proposed sub-section (4A) of section 45 of the Act was brought to tax is transferred subsequently by the specified entity.

These amendments will be effective from the 1st April, 2021 and will accordingly apply to the assessment year 2021-22 and subsequent assessment years.

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