The Stamp Duties Unit was a new unit which was transferred to FRCS effective from 1 April, 2011.
What services are provided by Stamp Duties Unit?
The main functions of the Unit, which is also located at our Customer Service Centres, are as follows:
- To attend to all general enquiries
- To assess legal documents.
- To process conditional exemption, refinancing and refund applications.
- To attend to waiver of stamp duties submission to the Minister for Finance.
- To attend to stamping of legal documents.
What is Stamp Duty?
Stamp duty is a tax on legal documents. Such documents are termed “instruments”.
It is payable on documents describe in the first schedule of the Stamp Duties Act- Revised up to 30th January, 2013;Stamp Duties (Amendment) Decree No. 28 of 2014- 30th August 2014 ; Stamp Duties Act- Revised up to 15th December 2014.
Examples of such documents are:
- Lease / Tenancy Agreements
These are documents that are prepared and signed when you rent a property. Stamp duty is calculated on the actual rent or market rent whichever is higher. The person who leases or rents the property (lessee or tenant) is responsible for paying stamp duty.
The revised stamp duty rates for leases are given in the Stamp Duties (Amendment) Decree 2011 (Decree No. 28 of 2014). For instance to promote the agricultural sector, exemption is given to leases for agricultural purposes (including dairy) where the land is below 100 acres.
- Sale & Purchase Agreements
These are documents that are prepared and signed when you buy or sell your property (real or personal) or sale of business. The buyer is responsible for paying stamp duty. Stamp duty fee is $10.
If there is a transaction that involves a transfer of property of any kind without any legal transfer document then 3% or 10% will be charged on the consideration or market value whichever is higher).
- Transfer Document
These are documents that are prepared and signed when you buy or sell real property. Stamp duty is payable on the price or valuation of the property. The document can be exempted if it qualifies under General or Conditional Exemption clause of the Stamp Duties Act.
The person who buys the property (transferee) is responsible for paying stamp duty on the Transfer document and the rate depends on the residency of the transferee.
These are documents that are prepared and signed when you obtain a loan from banks for the purchase of acquiring a property or for some other purposes. Stamp duty is chargeable on the loan amount and it depends on whether it is exempted or not.
The person who obtains the loan (mortgagor) is responsible for paying the stamp duty on the mortgage document. The stamp duty is charged at a rate of 1.75% or 5% of the loaned amount, depending on the residency of the applicant.
- Share Transfer Documents
These are documents that are prepared and signed when you buy or sell shares. Stamp duty is payable on the actual price or net asset value of the shares whichever is higher. The person who buys the shares (transferee) is responsible for paying stamp duty on the Share Transfer document.
- Transfer of Second-hand Motor Vehicles
These are the documents that must be presented to the Land Transport Authority (LTA) to register transfer of ownership of a registered motor vehicle. The Stamp duty rate is $3.00 for every $100.00 or part of $100 of the purchase or buying price.
Valuation to determine purchase price may be undertaken if no value is declared. LTA will collect the stamp duty on behalf of FRCS with effect from 01 February 2015.
Some exemptions apply to religious and charitable bodies, persons exempted under some other Fiji laws:
- Those exempted under their Act
- Transfer on will, divorce
- Penalties apply for late stamping 25% and 50%
Stamp Duty exemptions
|1||Any instrument that transfers ownership of a motor vehicle to, or in trust to any body of persons associated for a religious, charitable or educational purpose.||SDA Schedule on Transfers Exemption (b)||E.g. purchase of motor vehicles by registered educational institutions, churches, and charities; and transfer of motor vehicles to trustees of registered educational institutions, churches and charities.|
|2||Any instrument relating to the transfer of a motor vehicle that is exempt from stamp duty under a court order||SDA Schedule on Transfers Exemption (c )|
|3||All instruments for the transfer of motor vehicles to the Government||SDA Part 2 General exemption Paragraph 2|
|4||Any instrument for the transfer of “property” expressly exempted under any Act||SDA Part 2 General exemption Paragraph 8||E.g. under the FRCS Act is exempt from stamp duty on any motor vehicles purchased or transferred to it. The same applies to other statutory bodies that have a specific exempting provision from the payment of stamp duty.|
|5||Any instrument that transfers ownership under a probate or divorce settlement||SDA Part 2 General exemption Paragraph 28||This is effective from 01/01/15|
|Example 1A intends to sell registered Toyota Fielder to B for a consideration of $15,000. Mr A will transfer the title/ownership to Mr B. Calculate the stamp duty payable on this transfer by Mr B?||Stamp Duty = $15,000 * 3% = $450|
|Example 2Mr X intends to sell registered Toyota Ipsum to Mr Z for a consideration of $10,000. Mr X will transfer the title/ownership to Mr Z. Calculate the stamp duty payable on this transfer by Mr Z?||Stamp Duty = $10,000 * 3% = $300|
|Example 3Mr X intends to sell registered Toyota Ipsum to Mr Z for a consideration of $10,050. Mr X will transfer the title/ownership to Mr Z. Calculate the stamp duty payable on this transfer by Mr Z?||Stamp Duty = $10,100 * 3% = $303||Round up $10,050 to $10,100 as the SD is $3 per $100 or part of $100.|
When should I pay stamp duty?
Once the document is signed and dated, stamp duty needs to be paid:
- Within 2 months after the date of the document or
- More than 2 months and not more than 3 months after execution, a fine of 25% on the amount payable or $2, which ever is higher
- Within 3 months after execution, a fine of 50% on the amount of the duty payable or $4 , whichever is higher
- If executed at any place out of Fiji, may be stamped at any time within 1 month after it has been received in Fiji.
Why should I pay stamp duty?
It is an offence to use a document which stamp duty has not been paid on.
A document where stamp duty is paid can be admitted as evidence in the court in cases of disagreements.
What are the documents that I need not pay Stamp Duty?
Examples of documents where stamp duty is not payable:
- Statutory Declaration
- Revocation of Power of Attorney
- Record of Death
Click below for all Stamp Duty forms: