Video game developers missing ‘millions’ in tax relief

Just 357 video games were certified as British in the year 2017-18, allowing them to qualify for major tax reliefs, says accountancy firm Moore Stephens. Picture Michael Gillen.
Just 357 video games were certified as British in the year 2017-18, allowing them to qualify for major tax reliefs, says accountancy firm Moore Stephens. Picture Michael Gillen.
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Video game developers may be missing out on “millions of pounds” in tax relief, according to Moore Stephens.

The accountancy firm said just 357 video games were certified as British in the year 2017-18, allowing them to qualify for major tax reliefs, despite the UK being home to around 2,260 games developers.

Certification of a game as “British” by the British Film Institute is key to qualifying for video games tax relief (VGTR), which offers 25 per cent relief on up to 80 per cent of the core expenditure on design, production and testing.

In the last year, £105 million was claimed in VGTR, but many developers are not applying for the certification as they do not know the full scope of qualification criteria, said Moore Stephens.

Partner Sarah Friend added: “Many developers are potentially missing out on what can often be significant tax relief. There needs to be greater publicity about the tax relief already available to them.”