IT contractors' MPs asked to press Gauke

Thousands of IT contractors facing bankruptcy from Section 58, which imposed tax bills on them retrospectively, will this week urge their MPs to press the minister responsible to face up to the “injustice” in person.

Issued by campaign group No To Retro Tax, a template letter (published here on CUK today), allows the retrospective tax rule’s victims in all UK constituencies to push the group’s offer to David Gauke of a face-to-face meeting.

“[We want] as many people as possible to write to their MPs and ask that they contact Mr Gauke to suggest that a meeting between him and [our] campaign is needed…[regarding] Section 58,” said NTRT chair Alistair Renshaw, who invited the minister to the one-to-one last month.

At the time of his letter, on July 20th, Mr Renshaw acknowledged to the Exchequer Secretary that it would be impossible for him, as the minister responsible for tax, to meet with every campaign or individual that contacts him.

However, “when the matter is of such a feral nature, there is merit in both sides bringing this matter towards a conclusion through frank and open dialogue,” the former tax accountant wrote.

Moreover, the No To Retro Tax chair now claims the responses he has received from Mr Gauke, a one-time critic of retrospective taxation, are “inaccurate,” “untrue” and “misleading” – accusations that contractors sending the sample letter to their MP can reiterate.

The A4 document, complete with an emboldened sign-off to catch the attention of even the busiest of MPs, adds: “Mr Gauke vociferously opposed the legislation before coming into office.

“[He] pledged to review it if the Conservatives got into power, and despite the clear discrepancies in HMRC’s explanation for such punitive and draconian action against people who were only following the law as it stood at the time, the Exchequer Secretary has thus far refused to meet with representatives of the victims of this iniquitous legislation.”

Funded by donations from the victims of retrospective taxation, NTRT hopes that contractors and others caught by Section 58 (part 4 of the Finance Act 2008), will send the letter to “reinforce” their chairman’s direct attempt to resolve what they deem a “serious injustice.”

Aug 07, 2012