Fringe Benefit Tax – ESOP – Explanatory circular

CIRCULAR NO. 9/2007, DATED 20-12-2007

In terms of the provisions of Chapter XII-H of the Income-tax Act (hereinafter referred to as Act), an employer, being a company, is liable to pay Fringe Benefit Tax (FBT) in respect of the fringe benefits provided or deemed to have been provided by it to its employees, directly or indirectly, during the previous year.

With a view to bring grant of stock options by employers to employees within the purview of FBT, Finance Act, 2007 has inserted a new clause (d) in sub-section (1) of section 115WB. The salient features of this provision are:-

(i) FBT shall apply in all cases where any specified security or sweat equity shares has been allotted or transferred by the employer to his employees;

(ii) FBT shall be payable in the previous year in which such allotment or transfer has taken place;

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