The EU State Aid clearance for EMI option arrangements expired on 6 April and new clearance has not yet been granted by the European Commission.

As a result, HMRC have published a warning that companies considering putting new schemes in place or granting new options under existing schemes might want to delay until new approval has been confirmed by the Commission to avoid the risk that any options granted might be unapproved and so not benefit from the EMI scheme tax advantages.

HMRC have also confirmed that they consider that options granted under EMI schemes up to and including 6 April are covered by the State Aid approval so that exercise of those options will benefit from the EMI scheme tax regime.