Loan Charge 2019 wins its own APPG

Peers and MPs from across the political spectrum concerned about Loan Charge 2019 have set up a parliamentary group to assess the impact of the April tax on contractors.

The 2019 Loan Charge All-Party Parliamentary Group has officially assembled to probe both the effects on workers, and the wider context of the fairness of the legislation.

It will also look into the conduct of HMRC, following accusations by the Lords that HMRC potentially threatened taxpayers, and prioritised the collection of tax revenue over justice.

'Significant'

The Loan Charge Action Group, which campaigns against the April legislation, said the formation of an APPG dedicated to the charge represented a “significant development”.  

But the campaigner yesterday pointed out that APPGs are only informal groups which operate solely in an advisory role, so they are unable to change the statute book.

They also lack official status within parliament, despite being able to receive administration support and other benefits from external organisations.

New legal challenge 

Yet government departments usually consider the recommendations of APPGs, and their findings are known to add weight or support to a particular issue.

In the case of the loan charge, the issue of retrospection has already attracted condemnation from LCAG, IPSE, the FSB, the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee and 120 MPs.

And a new legal challenge against the charge, on top of an existing judicial review into it, is also incoming from WTT Consulting, which is preparing to outline it to ContractorUK readers.

'Unfair'

Sir Ed Davey, the Lib Dem MP who has forced the government into a Treasury review of the charge, will chair the APPG on the 2019 Loan Charge, and LCAG will be Secretariat.

Steve Packham, chair of LCAG, welcomed his group being appointed, saying it suggests the APPG acknowledges the “plight” of people hit by “ill-considered and unfair tax legislation.”

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