VI. Stamp Duty

The Stamp Duty Ordinance (Cap. 117 of the Laws of Hong Kong) imposes duty/tax on certain types of documents. Although stamp duty bears the word “stamp”, it is totally irrelevant to postage stamps. In general, the payment of stamp duty enables some specified documents to be recognized and enforceable by the Hong Kong courts. Those specified documents include:

  1. Conveyance on sale of immovable property (i.e. a legal document (Assignment) which formally transferred the property ownership from one party to another);
  2. Agreement for sale of residential property;
  3. Lease of immovable property (i.e. Tenancy Agreement/Lease); and
  4. Transfer of Hong Kong stock.

In other words, you will be liable to pay stamp duty if you:

  • sell (or purchase) a flat/building/land;
  • let out (or lease) a flat/building/land; or
  • sell (or purchase) shares of listed or unlisted limited company.

Rates of Stamp Duty

Please go to Inland Revenue Department's webpage.

Profits Tax Liabilities on Property Dealing

Duty payers are reminded that despite the payment of stamp duty, there are also Profits Tax liabilities in respect of assessable profits from the buying and selling of landed properties in the course of a business in Hong Kong. For more information on Profits Tax, please go to another section- Profit Tax.

  1. In what ways can I have a document stamped?
  2. Can I submit a license agreement for a property for stamping electronically?
  3. What is the time limit for stamping a document? Will penalties be imposed if I stamp the document late?
  4. Other than the penalties imposed for late stamping, what are the consequences if I fail to stamp a document on which stamp duty is charged?
  5. When will I have to pay an "adjudication fee"?