Posts tagged ‘Full Disclosure’

If you are a plumber or heating engineer and have undeclared earnings then now is the time to tell the taxman.

 

New amnesty launched 

Plumber James #2HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has launched a ‘tax amnesty’ known as the Plumbers Tax Safe Plan (PTSP).

 

The PTSP is the fifth tax amnesty to be offered to UK residents. Those targeted in previous schemes have included doctors, dentists and offshore account holders.

  

The amnesty provides an opportunity for plumbers who have not yet done so to make a full disclosure about their income without receiving excessive penalties and is only open until May 31st. Those who register with the scheme before this date will then have until August 31st to pay any back taxes as well as interest and penalties.

 

Potential Penalties

 

The Look of (Un)certainty...In most cases, HMRC will impose a penalty of 10%, although this could vary between zero and 20%, depending on your individual circumstances.

 

Those with undeclared earnings who fail to take advantage of this opportunity will face a crackdown by HMRC, which will be using information from the CORGI and Gas Safe registers to identify individuals it wants to question.

 

You can be sure that the penalties will be a lot higher if the taxman catches you out – and he is unlikely to be too sympathetic if you did not use the disclosure opportunity available.

  

While there are still costs involved, including the reduced penalty, the bill for making a full disclosure will still be a great deal cheaper than it would be when the taxman comes knocking.

 

Barry Jefferd, Tax Partner at George Hay, can advise on a wide range of taxation matters, including making a disclosure to HMRC. This opportunity is unlikely to be repeated, making it all the more important to act sooner rather than later.

 

Disclaimer: This article is for general guidance only.  All taxation planning should only be undertaken after appropriate professional advice.  George Hay Chartered Accountants are registered to carry on audit work and regulated for a range of investment business activities by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.

 

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HMRC now have powers to name and shame individuals and companies who deliberately evade taxes, by publishing their names, address and details of their evasion on the HMRC website.

New Powers

The law that provides HMRC with the power to disclose is included at Section 94 of the Finance Act 2009.  This ruling can be used by HMRC for accounting periods starting 1 April 2010, it therefore may take a little time before anything ‘juicy’ is made public.

ShameDeminimus

To be named and shamed the evasion must be deemed to be deliberate and involve tax of £25,000.



Preventing the embarrassment

A full voluntary disclosure of tax wrong doings without undue delay may help avoid the detail being published.

My thoughts

Once again HMRC have been given more opportunity to burden taxpayers with the subjective views of individual inspectors.

  • deliberate
  • undue delay and
  • ‘full’ disclosure

are all terms that I consider could be misconstrued or misrepresented and this allows different cases to be dealt with in different ways dependant on the mood, attitude or experience of the inspector.

If you are exposed to this new HMRC power, defending your position by challenging the inspectors opinion of your guilt may well be expensive and stressful.


The information provided in this blog illustrates my opinions and experiences, it does not constitute advice and I do not accept responsibility for any actions taken or refrained from as a result of reading this post.