11:00 AM, 10th March 2021, About 10 months ago 5
If a couple agrees to separate permanently, but without getting a court order they will be treated for SDLT purposes as an unmarried couple.
This means that for the purposes of the 3% surcharge each spouse can buy a house without being treated as owning any property the other spouse owns. This also means that transfers of property between them will be exempt from stamp duty.
If the above is correct does this mean no evidence of separation is needed in which case it could be open to abuse and one of them can end up owning two properties and not having to pay the extra 3%.
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