HC Deb 16 May 1907 vol 174 c1086

To ask Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer whether money paid to authors who receive remuneration for their work wholly or in part by way of royalty will be regarded as earned or unearned income for the purpose of abatement of income-tax.

(Answered by Mr. Asquith) The conditions of payment, which depend in each case on the terms of the particular contract, vary so much, that I do not think it would be possible to lay down any general rule which would be applicable to all cases. Under the Finance Bill, as drafted (Clause 18 (7) (c), earned income is defined, as regards profits assessable under Schedule D, into which category these royalties fall, as any income which "is immediately derived by the individual from the carrying on or exercise by him of his profession, trade, or vocation." Whether, and how far, an author's receipts from royalties should be regarded as being immediately derived from the exercise of his vocation of authorship, or to have become an income from property in the copyright, will have to be determined, as a matter of fact, according to the circumstances of the particular case.