Intangible Assets Definition, Examples, Explain

intangible assets

This is categorically not the case; and the Financial Reporting Council are keen to emphasise that this would only be the case in exceptional circumstances. Regardless of whether the software is capitalised as an intangible asset or a tangible asset, the software must be amortised or depreciated over its useful economic life. As mentioned above, all intangible assets have finite useful lives under current UK GAAP.

  • Large taxable income gains may accrue to companies in the sports industry where a player’s registration is transferred to another club for a profit.
  • Under FRS 102, assets cannot be carried in the balance sheet in excess of recoverable amount and this principle applies to fixed assets (i.e. tangible and intangible) also.
  • The Board revised IAS 38 in March 2004 as part of the first phase of its Business Combinations project.
  • A company will record an impairment loss if it deems the goodwill’s value has decreased from its recorded book value.
  • This 10-year rule has caused an element of confusion because some accountants believe this to be a maximum period for all intangible assets, which is not the case.
  • In accounting, goodwill represents the difference between the purchase price of a business and the fair value of its assets, net of liabilities.

We provide a full range of tax, accounting and business advisory services to our clients to help them achieve their personal or corporate objectives. See how today’s finance leaders are controlling T&E costs while improving the ROI of business travel. Copyrights protect plays, literary works, musical works, pictures, photographs, and audiovisual materials, and the copyright owner receives royalties or remuneration when granting permission to use the copyrighted property. Valuation of artistic-related assets is the most challenging because a creative asset has no market comparable.

Corporate Intangibles Research and Development Manual

This has increased costs of compliance in some instances, which the FRC have recognised goes against the principles of standard-setting. In addition, we will also consider some of the changes that have been made to the accounting for other than goodwill as part of the Financial Reporting Council’s triennial review of UK GAAP which completed in December 2017. The corporate intangible assets regime links the tax treatment to that applied in the accounts of the company in question. As a result, the tax treatment should reflect more closely the commercial realities of the situation, and so help avoid the distortion of commercial decisions by tax considerations. If the website does not generate income for the business, then it will fail to meet the asset recognition criteria and the costs must be written off to profit or loss.

intangible assets

Software and website costs which are being developed internally are dealt with under Section 18 of FRS 102 as research and development costs. All research expenditure (pure and applied) must be written off to profit or loss as expenditure; there is no option at all to capitalise research expenditure. This is because in the research phase of a project, an entity will be unable to demonstrate than an intangible asset exists which will generate probable future economic benefits.


The treatment of assets of this type acquired prior to 1 April 2019 will depend on the date of acquisition, with tax relief disallowed in some cases. The long-term relationship with customers has a great intangible value for the business. Customer relationships are developed from past contracts that have given a different edge to trade relationships. The value of customer contracts and related customer relationships may flow from either incremental cash flows owing to the contract or the potential of new contracts from the same customers.

intangible assets

It is no longer permissible to carry How to account for grant in nonprofit accounting with indefinite useful lives as it was under previous FRS 10 and the FRSSE. Unlike previous UK GAAP, goodwill is not dealt with in the intangible assets section, instead it is dealt with in Section 19 Business Combinations and Goodwill. FRS 102 The Financial Reporting Standard applicable in the UK and Republic of Ireland deals with the issue of intangible assets (but not goodwill) at Section 18 Intangible Assets other than Goodwill. For more information on the tax regime for intangible fixed assets, please contact your usual Saffery partner or speak to James Bramsdon.

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The September 2015 edition of FRS 102 does not show the term in bold, but it does in the revised FRS 102 following the triennial review). Rollover relief can also be claimed in instances where one company disposes of an IFA and the replacement asset is acquired by a group company and may also be claimed in respect of degrouping charges. Transfers of IFAs between group companies can be undertaken on a tax neutral basis, provided both the transferor and transferee are within the charge to UK corporation tax and they are both members of the same group for IFA purposes. Large taxable income gains may accrue to companies in the sports industry where a player’s registration is transferred to another club for a profit. We specialise in specific sectors and areas of business where we have real in-depth expertise and experience, working with a variety of clients including private individuals, owner-managed businesses and not-for-profit entities.

  • For several reasons, governments at all levels may choose to provide financial assistance to companies that engage in certain activities.
  • Where the carrying amount of a fixed asset exceeds recoverable amount, the fixed asset is impaired and is written down to recoverable amount.
  • On 26 June 2023 the ISSB issued its inaugural standards—IFRS S1 and IFRS S2—ushering in a new era of sustainability-related disclosures in capital markets worldwide.
  • When software costs meet the recognition criteria for an asset, again consideration must be given as to the type of software being capitalised.

If the website will allow third parties to place orders for goods or services, then this creates a revenue stream for the business (i.e. economic benefit). Provided the cost can be measured reliably and none of the expenditure relates to research costs, then the website may be capitalised on the balance sheet as an intangible asset and amortised over its useful economic life. Please note that under FRS 102, cannot have indefinite useful lives (see ‘Amortisation of intangible assets’ below). Where this manual provides guidance on the accounting treatment under GAAP, the references are to Sections 18 and 19 of FRS102. Other accounting standards dealing with intangible assets and goodwill include IFRS3, IAS38, Sections 13 and 14 of FRS 105, FRS7 and FRS10. In instances where the principles of these other accounting standards differ from those of Sections 18 and 19 of FRS102, this is highlighted in the relevant section.






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