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Stamp Duty

What is Stamp Duty?

Stamp duty is a tax that is levied on documents. Major forms of duty include the duty on the sale or transfer of properties, businesses, shares and other forms of property mortgage; lease agreements, etc.

A physical stamp had to be attached to or impressed upon the document to denote that stamp duty had been paid before the document was legally effective.

When is stamp duty charged and how is it calculated?

Every document executed which is chargeable to duty under the Stamp Duty Act shall be dully stamped within two months of execution.

Stamp duty is charged using standardized or percentage rates, depending on the type of documentations or transactions required to be stamped. For example, all instruments in respect of Agreement or Memorandum of Agreement, the stamp duty to be charged $50.00. Transfer of properties or shares is calculated using a range of rates from 2% to 4% on corresponding transactional values.

There are transactions that require valuations, for instance transfer of properties, or transfer of shares. Vendors are required to obtain property or share valuation reports before bringing documents to be stamped. The Commissioner of Inland Revenue is at liberty to refuse any document to be stamped unless he is satisfied that the value stated in the document is the certified value.

Rates of Stamp Duties:

1. All instruments on Agreement or Memorandum of Agreement   $50.00
2. Bill of Sales   $50.00
3. Deed of Any kind   $50.00
4. Transfer of properties [amount between]
a. $10,000.00 and $20,000.00   2%
b. $25,000.00 and $50,000.00   3%
c. $50,000.00 and above   4%

Full list of stamp duty rates can be obtained from the Legislation.