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Rob79
5th November 2014, 12:29
https://www.gov.uk/government/news/ten-things-you-need-to-know-about-tax-avoidance

The above is published today by HMRC.

To put this in context. HMRC has previously issued versions of this and this is just one more iteration. It is entirely HMRC centric and some of the statements made are potentially misleading. In particular it does not mention that the goalposts of what is tax avoidance or not have moved a vast distance in the past 10 years and what was seen as acceptable in 2004 is now firmly the wrong side of the line. A lot of those situations have yet to be tested in Court.

The "8 out of 10" claim is spurious. HMRC has won a lot of cases because they have permitted only certain cases to reach Court. Over the long period (another 5 years) the success rate will fall.

Crucially, there is still no definition of tax avoidance that is worth its salt.

The list is a relatively decent indicator of the general position but please don't panic over the detail as almost all of it can be challenged.

prozak
6th February 2015, 14:04
That is like the Daily Mail's guide to tax avoidance.

Lewis
6th February 2015, 15:19
Well it used to be known as this


Tax avoidance is the legal usage of the tax regime to one's own advantage to reduce the amount of tax that is payable by means that are within the law. Tax avoidance - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tax_avoidance)

However HMRC clearly now see it to be the same as evasion:


Tax evasion is the illegal evasion of taxes by individuals, corporations and trusts. Tax evasion - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tax_evasion)

This document is a classic example:
https://www.gov.uk/government/news/hmrc-puts-forward-new-measures-to-tackle-persistent-tax-avoiders


HMRC is serious about stopping avoidance: the government is taking unprecedented steps to clamp down on the small minority who try to avoid paying tax that is legally due.

I am curious as to why HMRC has unilaterally decided to change the definition when nobody else has, e.g. search anywhere on the web/dictionaries/legal sites etc. and they define avoidance as legal and evasion as illegal. Why don't HMRC just call it evasion instead?

malvolio
6th February 2015, 16:40
It's a fine distinction, to be fair. Avoidance is not paying taxes you know not to be owed: for example - a very simple one - by understanding your personal allowance calculation and what can contribute to it. Evasion is not paying taxes you know (or should know, in a world of self assessment and declaration) are owed.

The fine line is using tax allowances that are themselves entirely legal but which you aren't entitled to claim, a good example being Chris Moyles claiming allowances against losses incurred as a used car dealer without actually trading any used cars, or applying corporate schemes intended to maximise returns from pension funds to normal earned income.

It's because the vehicle itself is legal that there isn't a black and white separation between this artificial avoidance and genuine evasion. HMRC need to make the distinction clear, but the chances of them clarifying anything is vanishingly small.

BolshieBastard
6th February 2015, 16:47
What hacks me off is that hmrc seem (to me at least) to be merging and winning the opinion that tax avoidance is illegal.

Apparently there's tax evasion, 'aggressive' tax avoidance and tax avoidance. And in the eyes of many thanks to hmrc, all are equally illegal.

SueEllen
6th February 2015, 17:07
What hacks me off is that hmrc seem (to me at least) to be merging and winning the opinion that tax avoidance is illegal.



That's why it's fun to tell every permie with an ISA or pension they are tax avoiders.

centurian
6th February 2015, 18:18
The fine line is using tax allowances that are themselves entirely legal but which you aren't entitled to claim, a good example being Chris Moyles claiming allowances against losses incurred as a used car dealer without actually trading any used cars, or applying corporate schemes intended to maximise returns from pension funds to normal earned income.

It's because the vehicle itself is legal that there isn't a black and white separation between this artificial avoidance and genuine evasion. HMRC need to make the distinction clear, but the chances of them clarifying anything is vanishingly small.

I still don't understand why that isn't treated as fraud. Somewhere along the chain, at least one party must be telling porkies - surely that makes it evasion.

I suspect it comes down to being able to prove deception, which is very hard when all the documentation says it operates one way, yet there is an implicit gentlemen's agreement between all the parties that it will work another way.

SueEllen
6th February 2015, 21:57
I still don't understand why that isn't treated as fraud. Somewhere along the chain, at least one party must be telling porkies - surely that makes it evasion.

I suspect it comes down to being able to prove deception, which is very hard when all the documentation says it operates one way, yet there is an implicit gentlemen's agreement between all the parties that it will work another way.

The law and tax regulations in the UK aren't black and white unlike in some other countries. The way they are written gives people/companies plenty of scope to try their luck, and some of them actually succeed in court.

There are numerous examples of people/companies interpreting them differently from HMRC, but you only hear of the cases HMRC wins and those that involve contractors.

Remember some people class us as evaders for using limited companies not understanding why we are forced to operate as we are thanks to previous governments, and that the tax regulations we use apply to any small closed business.

centurian
7th February 2015, 09:30
The law and tax regulations in the UK aren't black and white unlike in some other countries. The way they are written gives people/companies plenty of scope to try their luck, and some of them actually succeed in court.

That bit I understand

What I can't fathom is that if you have to tell a lie ("I am a car dealer", "that money is a loan") in order to make a tax avoidance scheme "work", why is that not fraud.

DonkeyRhubarb
7th February 2015, 09:45
If you are curious about the car dealer scheme, which Chris Moyles participated in, here is the FTT judgment.

http://www.financeandtaxtribunals.gov.uk/judgmentfiles/j7618/TC03314.pdf

jbryce
7th February 2015, 09:50
That bit I understand

What I can't fathom is that if you have to tell a lie ("I am a car dealer", "that money is a loan") in order to make a tax avoidance scheme "work", why is that not fraud.

No idea about being a car dealer, but as for loans - they are actually loans and for the EBTs you paid a tax on the benefit. HMRC even see them as loans out of a trust and expect, in some cases IHT. The fraud may come in saying that these are perfectly legal avoidance mechanisms, and the joke of it all is - they probably are legal avoidance mechanisms.

Avoidance is a legally complex and difficult area made so by our bonkers tax laws. HMG has introduces the GAAR to rule on such mechanisms because they acknowledge that fighting legal avoidance through the court has proved difficult.

malvolio
7th February 2015, 10:45
No idea about being a car dealer, but as for loans - they are actually loans and for the EBTs you paid a tax on the benefit. HMRC even see them as loans out of a trust and expect, in some cases IHT. The fraud may come in saying that these are perfectly legal avoidance mechanisms, and the joke of it all is - they probably are legal avoidance mechanisms.

Avoidance is a legally complex and difficult area made so by our bonkers tax laws. HMG has introduces the GAAR to rule on such mechanisms because they acknowledge that fighting legal avoidance through the court has proved difficult.
But that's my point. The loans from an EBT are a tax avoidance vehicle intended to maximise returns from a pension fund post retirement, when you have no more income to play with (that's also the source of the confusion over IHT; look at it from a pension provision viewpoint and IHT is an entirely logical outcome).

They were not intended as a way to reduce taxes on earned income; the problem is the law doesn't explicitly state that (gosh...) hence the uncertainty as to their validity.

Also the GAAR is basically to allow HMRC to challenge any arrangement they see as outside the intent of the law; the piddling amount they will try to get from one man bands is a side effect of an attack on corporate taxation reduction and salary optimisation plans: they are firstly trying to stop people using more imaginative schemes in the first place by making anything "out of the ordinary" subject to close scrutiny and closure under a wide-ranging policy. The GAAR is a regulation, not a law, and requires a lower burden of proof: merely that it is agreed to be wrong by a tribunal, not that is contravenes a given law.

It helps your cause if you understand both sides of the argument, even if you don't agree with it.

jbryce
7th February 2015, 12:57
But that's my point. The loans from an EBT are a tax avoidance vehicle intended to maximise returns from a pension fund post retirement, when you have no more income to play with (that's also the source of the confusion over IHT; look at it from a pension provision viewpoint and IHT is an entirely logical outcome).

They were not intended as a way to reduce taxes on earned income; the problem is the law doesn't explicitly state that (gosh...) hence the uncertainty as to their validity.

Also the GAAR is basically to allow HMRC to challenge any arrangement they see as outside the intent of the law; the piddling amount they will try to get from one man bands is a side effect of an attack on corporate taxation reduction and salary optimisation plans: they are firstly trying to stop people using more imaginative schemes in the first place by making anything "out of the ordinary" subject to close scrutiny and closure under a wide-ranging policy. The GAAR is a regulation, not a law, and requires a lower burden of proof: merely that it is agreed to be wrong by a tribunal, not that is contravenes a given law.

It helps your cause if you understand both sides of the argument, even if you don't agree with it.

I don't think I said the GAAR was a Law - it's intention is to allow HMRC to nail avoidance arrangements without initial recourse to the courts. It's a good thing in that it allows HMRC to react to schemes quickly without having to arse around playing catch up. They can also issue APNs off the back of a GAAR ruling - that should surely dissuade some scheme suppliers and their customers. Having said that - the GAAR has not been used against a single contractor scheme - HMRC need to pull their finger out and use it.

As for both sides - I do understand them and, in general, I think HMG/HMRC has a right to minimse avoidance. That goes for simple avoidance and more esoteric avoidance - such as EBTs etc. But HMRC are not the law and, much as they dislike it, they will have to win their cases through the courts as the law intended. That's a good thing.

A lot of us use Limited companies, it confers an advantage that, arguably, HMRC did not intend us to have. They have tried, and to a large extent failed, to muddy the waters with IR35 and I'm sure they will come around again for another bite. In the end, to work within the law as HMRC would prefer, all contractors would work through Umbrellas and pay tax and NICs as intended by HMRC.

centurian
7th February 2015, 14:47
No idea about being a car dealer, but as for loans - they are actually loans and for the EBTs you paid a tax on the benefit. HMRC even see them as loans out of a trust and expect, in some cases IHT. The fraud may come in saying that these are perfectly legal avoidance mechanisms, and the joke of it all is - they probably are legal avoidance mechanisms.

But they are not really loans are they - the documentation may well be place to say they are, but there must be some gentlemen's agreement that they are not actual loans that will ever be called in, which means one or more parties are making statements which are not strictly true.

Maybe I just don't understand the law enough - I just never understood why HMRC don't even so much as try to make a case for fraud on certain schemes.

StrengthInNumbers
7th February 2015, 15:39
They are loans with properly witnessed and signed agreements. No side letters or any gentlemen agreement. If trustee will recall loans will have to be paid back whatever a contractor or promotor might say.

jbryce
8th February 2015, 10:38
But they are not really loans are they - the documentation may well be place to say they are, but there must be some gentlemen's agreement that they are not actual loans that will ever be called in, which means one or more parties are making statements which are not strictly true.

Maybe I just don't understand the law enough - I just never understood why HMRC don't even so much as try to make a case for fraud on certain schemes.

Gentlemen's agreements have no standing in law, and are not enforceable - so any such agreement is not worth anything. Avoidance utilises the law to minimise the amount of tax that is paid. Avoidance is legal.
Because our tax regime is so complex the use of loans and other mechanisms to avoid tax may be not as HMRC intended, but it is still a mechanism. Fraud becomes an issue if the provider lies to the mug using the scheme - for example misrepresenting a QC opinion or not running the scheme as advertised.

The GAAR makes this all much more difficult as the GAAR doesn't have to pursue a scheme through the courts and an APN can be issued off the back of a GAAR decision. Post 2013 anyone in an avoidance arrangement is mad.

DonkeyRhubarb
8th February 2015, 12:47
Post 2013 anyone in an avoidance arrangement is mad.

And anyone who is still in one now is even more insane.

StrengthInNumbers
8th February 2015, 15:03
I have been limited company since 2013 but God knows if HMRC considers limited company as avoidance or not.
I hope they don't. No other way to be a contractor!

jbryce
8th February 2015, 15:20
I have been limited company since 2013 but God knows if HMRC considers limited company as avoidance or not.
I hope they don't. No other way to be a contractor!

Yes there is - you can use a legit umbrella company.

centurian
8th February 2015, 21:29
Yes there is - you can use a legit umbrella company.

And even then - be careful about submitting "expense" claims, which a legitimate umbrella may well approve, but HMRC are cracking down upon

centurian
8th February 2015, 21:33
Gentlemen's agreements have no standing in law, and are not enforceable - so any such agreement is not worth anything.

I'm not completely convinced about that - I can certainly think of a few examples, but I am happy to move the debate on.

In any event, even if there ever was the remotest chance of a case for fraud, HMRC just don't have the balls to take it the distance. Take this - just reported today - only one person prosecuted for evasion despite 1,100 targets

BBC News - HSBC bank 'helped clients dodge millions in tax' (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-31248913)

webberg
9th February 2015, 09:19
Interesting comments - so I'll add my contribution.

Evasion is doing something illegal. If you drive a car at 40 mph in a 30 mph zone, that's illegal. It's treated by the law as being a trivial offence, dealt with via a fine but is none the less illegal.

If the signage on the roadside is vague, obscured, unclear, then you can argue that your interpretation of the law is acceptable. A judge may say that your interpretation is incorrect based on either the facts or the law. Applying an incorrect interpretation is not illegal in itself (although pushed to the extremes it will be).

UK tax law has moved in the past 10+ years from a predominantly form over substance approach to the opposite. The law as drafted cannot cope with that and we have seen a lot of vague publications where the "intention" of Parliament is said to have been explained and people are encouraged to respect that intention.

This varies from what is seen in say the US where a very prescriptive tax law makes avoidance relatively easy. The IRS wages a war on this in some very public ways. Their main weapon however is that a conviction for tax avoidance carries harsh penalties (prison, unable to hold a position of trust, striking off professional registers, etc) and therefore most people in a position to execute such planning (who tend to be relatively intelligent and successful people) just don't do it.

The UK though is in a halfway house. We have some areas of the law using form over substance (capital allowances, IHT) and some using the opposite (income tax).

Using a company was attacked in what is universally known as the Arctic Systems case. HMRC tried to say that was a trust arrangement. They lost and promised "rectifying" legislation which we have still not seen. This may return.

The best advice in considering any scheme is to apply a simple test.

Am I receiving cash that I can use in any way I wish and upon which a reasonable rate of tax has been deducted?

If the answer is "no", then look very hard at the law.

prozak
9th February 2015, 09:45
They are loans with properly witnessed and signed agreements. No side letters or any gentlemen agreement. If trustee will recall loans will have to be paid back whatever a contractor or promotor might say.

That is correct.

The question for many people is why don't they recall them?

The simple answer is that the Trust is in your name and the Trustees are legally obligated to act in the best interest of the beneficiary.

That's my understanding anyhow.

StrengthInNumbers
9th February 2015, 11:30
That is correct.

The question for many people is why don't they recall them?

The simple answer is that the Trust is in your name and the Trustees are legally obligated to act in the best interest of the beneficiary.

That's my understanding anyhow.

Nup. Trust is not in contractors name and trustees are completely independent. A beneficiary cannot control what a trustee will do.

Trustee have and turn down requests from beneficiaries of they see fit.

As soon as trustees will feel it is in the interest of beneficiaries they can and will recall the loans.

jbryce
9th February 2015, 11:38
...but here is the mad thing. Trusts are a legitimate structure, loans out of a trust are legitimate - so all of that is (kindof) defensible. HMRC have used ToAA to attack some schemes (although not an EBT) and the applicability of that is open to question. Boyle was a basket case scheme - not very representative of 99% of schemes and the Rangers case isn't that applicable either.
So:

Why the f*** don't HMRC take some EBT schemes to court?
Why don't they use the GAAR to get a decision against some of the non DOTAS schemes?

prozak
9th February 2015, 11:40
Nup. Trust is not in contractors name and trustees are completely independent. A beneficiary cannot control what a trustee will do.

Trustee have and turn down requests from beneficiaries of they see fit.

As soon as trustees will feel it is in the interest of beneficiaries they can and will recall the loans.

Not those that I investigated.

There was a sub-trust in the name of the contractor.

jbryce
9th February 2015, 12:24
Not those that I investigated.

There was a sub-trust in the name of the contractor.

...which kind of illustrates HMRCs difficulty. There are many different flavours of EBT trust and the way they are set up is relevant to the subject of tax. The more esoteric trust arrangements are even more complex.
APNs mean that they don't have to worry toe much about the finer detail which, as we've seen with the IHT fiasco, is not something they are very good at.
The GAAR means that they can issue APNs against the newer arrangements, post 2013, without having to do too much detail.

webberg
9th February 2015, 12:25
Not those that I investigated.

There was a sub-trust in the name of the contractor.

It depends on the scheme.

Early versions had one overarching trust that had a number of beneficiaries. Later versions moved to the sort of structure you see in the Murray Group litigation. Not entirely sure why although I suspect that it was to do with being able to terminate or amend individual trusts without going through a complicated exercise about whether one person might be disadvantaged by another's situation.

We were told a few months back that cases are being prepared for litigation and should be in Court this year. That said I also today had a letter from HMRC apologizing for a delay that they admit is their fault and asking for yet more information on a structure that closed 6 (that's SIX) year's ago and which they don't even have a view on legally despite that scheme having been repealed in 2011.

I feel a complaint to the Revenue Ombudsman coming on (not that this will do much except cost the client more in fees).

squirrel
9th February 2015, 12:27
I'm not completely convinced about that - I can certainly think of a few examples, but I am happy to move the debate on.

In any event, even if there ever was the remotest chance of a case for fraud, HMRC just don't have the balls to take it the distance. Take this - just reported today - only one person prosecuted for evasion despite 1,100 targets

BBC News - HSBC bank 'helped clients dodge millions in tax' (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-31248913)

And in that article ...

"And while tax avoidance is perfectly legal, deliberately hiding money to evade tax is not"

aarrgghh!

StrengthInNumbers
9th February 2015, 13:41
On ToAA:
Many other strong points exist but simplest is if EBT is legal in UK, how can EBTS in IoM be avoidance. ToAA has to apply when avoidance or tax advantage existed when transferring abroad. Thus Rangers case important. Strangely HMRC has not appealed other EBT cases with UBS and deutche bank which both HMRC lost in UTT and court of appeal.

prozak
9th February 2015, 13:46
On ToAA:
Many other strong points exist but simplest is if EBT is legal in UK, how can EBTS in IoM be avoidance..

Aren't you doing the classic thing here that HMRC appear to want?

ALL avoidance is legal.

ALL evasion is illegal.

So being legal in the UK or any other tax jurisdiction can still be avoidance if based in IoM.


As for the HSBC article. What most people fail to realise is that EVASION is not illegal in Switzerland. Their banking principles are such that they will only help foreign authorities if there is a crime that was comitted that is ALSO a crime in Switzerland. So EVASION is fine for them. Tax Fraud however is not.

That's how i tused to be anyway and I cannot imagine the Swiss like to change too much.

webberg
9th February 2015, 14:20
Aren't you doing the classic thing here that HMRC appear to want?

ALL avoidance is legal.

ALL evasion is illegal.

So being legal in the UK or any other tax jurisdiction can still be avoidance if based in IoM.


As for the HSBC article. What most people fail to realise is that EVASION is not illegal in Switzerland. Their banking principles are such that they will only help foreign authorities if there is a crime that was comitted that is ALSO a crime in Switzerland. So EVASION is fine for them. Tax Fraud however is not.

That's how i tused to be anyway and I cannot imagine the Swiss like to change too much.

Part of the deal done by the Swiss and HMRC is that aside from a one off information exchange (after a long notice period to allow people to move their money), information would then be available annually.

There was also discussion about a charge being levied on each bank account and remitted to HMRC to allow taxpayers to then argue for it being returned. I would need to check whether that piece survived the final version of the agreement.

webberg
10th February 2015, 10:14
https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/402448/150202_deliberate_defaulters.pdf

HMRC issues regular lists of those they regard as deserving "name and shame".

The first name on the latest list is interesting.

I've not researched who the company is connected to nor what they did but looking at the name, it looks like some form of agency/contractor arrangement.

In terms of HMRC's weapons, perhaps not the most effective but an indication of what they can do.

webberg
10th February 2015, 10:23
£16m black hole as payroll parasite David Allen calls in the liquidators - Investigations (http://blogs.mirror.co.uk/investigations/2013/05/16m-black-hole-as-payroll-para.html).

EBTContractor
10th February 2015, 11:00
Love that a leaflet distribution outfit is named and shamed over 2 x £55!

squirrel
10th February 2015, 12:16
https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/402448/150202_deliberate_defaulters.pdf

HMRC issues regular lists of those they regard as deserving "name and shame".

The first name on the latest list is interesting.

I've not researched who the company is connected to nor what they did but looking at the name, it looks like some form of agency/contractor arrangement.

In terms of HMRC's weapons, perhaps not the most effective but an indication of what they can do.

I can't see many Lords and Sirs and double-barrelled surnames on the list. I thought tax avoidance / evasion / corruption only went on in the upper echelons of society, well according to 90% of those having their say on the BBC HSBC article yesterday at least. It was incredible at how bitter and blinkered the vast majority of the respondents were. I did, however, come across a new phrase, the Politics of Envy. Never heard it called that before but it's perfect, succinct and exactly what HMRC and HMG (all parties) are up to. Unfortunately it's working and by the time the 90% realise what's happened it will be too late.

webberg
10th February 2015, 12:46
I can't see many Lords and Sirs and double-barrelled surnames on the list. I thought tax avoidance / evasion / corruption only went on in the upper echelons of society, well according to 90% of those having their say on the BBC HSBC article yesterday at least. It was incredible at how bitter and blinkered the vast majority of the respondents were. I did, however, come across a new phrase, the Politics of Envy. Never heard it called that before but it's perfect, succinct and exactly what HMRC and HMG (all parties) are up to. Unfortunately it's working and by the time the 90% realise what's happened it will be too late.

There's always votes to be had in bashing the more fortunate.

regron
12th February 2015, 08:26
Not sure if anyone saw Sky News this morning at about 07:45 but they were discussing the current HSBC Tax Avoidance scandal which has recently broke. One chap being interviewed (didn't get details) stated as we all know that whilst Tax Evasion is illegal, Tax Avoidance isn't. He agreed with the government clamping down on Avoidance but clearly disagreed with the retrospective way of doing so, stating that whilst the HMRC tackle, name and shame big businesses and celebrities, there are a lot of others such as 'us' out there where it will hit very hard.

Ok, nothing over positive or to get overly excited about and not exactly breaking news but my point being, at least some people out there understand the implication of such draconian measures by HMRC and this is the first time I have heard that normal people will be affected by the media. Anything to keep the pressure on and the legs going on all of this !!!!

Boobetty
12th February 2015, 20:27
It was also nice to see Lin Homer getting a pasting off Maggie Hodge yesterday. At one point Hodge criticised HMRC by pointing out that they just sit and wait for people to come forward. Homer defended, saying HMRC are 'proactive'.

Proactive my *rse. I've had a COP8 open for almost ten years and they have done precisely ***k all in that time other than wait for new legislation that provides them with the toolkit to achieve what they wanted to achieve over the last decade but without any effort.

Laughable really. 'HMRC' and 'proactive' cannot be used in the same sentence.

squirrel
12th February 2015, 23:10
Err, was it me or did Sarah Wollaston MP just say that Tax Avoidance can't be applied retrospectively live on TV?

Axeman
13th February 2015, 08:39
But then, as Lord Fink so eloquently says:

"Tax avoidance, everybody does it"

Lord Fink: tax avoidance is normal in British society | Business | The Guardian (http://www.theguardian.com/business/2015/feb/12/lord-fink-tax-avoidance-is-normal-in-british-society)

zimbtar
13th February 2015, 12:54
Err, was it me or did Sarah Wollaston MP just say that Tax Avoidance can't be applied retrospectively live on TV?

I definitely heard that as well. I thought I'd misheard.
Now we are clearly seeing why those clauses are in the legislation to protect MP's from these measures...

webberg
13th February 2015, 13:15
I definitely heard that as well. I thought I'd misheard.
Now we are clearly seeing why those clauses are in the legislation to protect MP's from these measures...

Would clearly be an error to think that an MP with a background as a medic would know anything about tax (lots of doctors though use tax avoidance schemes) or even policy.

The main parties have no policy on tax avoidance other than "it's bad for votes" if they are weak.

It's policy by tabloid headline.

zimbtar
13th February 2015, 13:23
“HM Revenue & Customs says that this legislation is only there to stop ‘tax avoidance’. However, Section 554E(8) specifically exempts members of the House of Commons and the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority from the new legislation in situations where they are actually caught by it."

Why should MPs be exempt from new law to block tax avoidance? – Telegraph Blogs (http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/finance/ianmcowie/100009953/why-should-mps-be-exempt-from-new-law-to-block-tax-avoidance/)

Zero Liability
14th February 2015, 02:22
Shocking.


There's always votes to be had in bashing the more fortunate.

The more successful*.


It was also nice to see Lin Homer getting a pasting off Maggie Hodge yesterday. At one point Hodge criticised HMRC by pointing out that they just sit and wait for people to come forward. Homer defended, saying HMRC are 'proactive'.

Proactive my *rse. I've had a COP8 open for almost ten years and they have done precisely ***k all in that time other than wait for new legislation that provides them with the toolkit to achieve what they wanted to achieve over the last decade but without any effort.

Laughable really. 'HMRC' and 'proactive' cannot be used in the same sentence.

Nice, but it'd be even better if someone with a bit more moral fibre than Margaret Hodge did the grilling... her only issue with HMRC is that they're not proactive enough in extracting more money from the productive in society, without discrimination. Meanwhile, when it comes to her own family's company and its use of "tax efficiency", we get silence and "I know nuffin' about UK company tax law". Sure, Maggie.

Not Losing Any Sleep
16th February 2015, 20:33
Shocking.



The more successful*.



Nice, but it'd be even better if someone with a bit more moral fibre than Margaret Hodge did the grilling... her only issue with HMRC is that they're not proactive enough in extracting more money from the productive in society, without discrimination. Meanwhile, when it comes to her own family's company and its use of "tax efficiency", we get silence and "I know nuffin' about UK company tax law". Sure, Maggie.

'I probably shouldn't be advocating this': Video of a young George Osborne advising voters how to dodge taxes unearthed | Daily Mail Online (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2955919/I-probably-shouldn-t-advocating-Video-young-George-Osborne-advising-voters-dodge-taxes-unearthed.html)

squirrel
17th February 2015, 07:14
'I probably shouldn't be advocating this': Video of a young George Osborne advising voters how to dodge taxes unearthed | Daily Mail Online (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2955919/I-probably-shouldn-t-advocating-Video-young-George-Osborne-advising-voters-dodge-taxes-unearthed.html)

Oh dear! I hope this gets the Facebook / Twitter treatment. I'm not usually one for a witch hunt but we can't let this go surely?

I am also somewhat amused (and bemused) by the response to the suggestion of getting receipts for cash jobs. This must be the first time in history that a crime (evasion) is acceptable but a non-crime (avoidance) isn't!

Is the general population of this country really that idiotic to believe all this tosh? Are they all so blinded by jealousy? It seems that way and it saddens me.

Zero Liability
17th February 2015, 08:04
It gets better...

Ed Balls among 12 shadow cabinet members who claimed expenses without receipts - Telegraph (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/labour/11416788/Ed-Balls-among-12-shadow-cabinet-members-who-claimed-expenses-without-receipts.html)

squirrel
17th February 2015, 08:37
It gets better...

Ed Balls among 12 shadow cabinet members who claimed expenses without receipts - Telegraph (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/labour/11416788/Ed-Balls-among-12-shadow-cabinet-members-who-claimed-expenses-without-receipts.html)

And in that article:

"He had earlier said that even someone who “cuts your hedge for a tenner” should provide an invoice to discourage tax avoidance"

Err, no, that' would be to discourage tax evasion!

Not Losing Any Sleep
17th February 2015, 20:37
And in that article:

"He had earlier said that even someone who “cuts your hedge for a tenner” should provide an invoice to discourage tax avoidance"

Err, no, that' would be to discourage tax evasion!

Waiting for Godot | Tax Avoidance – Game Over? The Hardman Lecture 2014 (http://waitingfortax.com/2014/11/12/tax-avoidance-game-over-the-hardman-lecture-2014/)