Treasury stands by taxman over loan charge suicide allegation

The Treasury is standing by the taxman by insisting that the Loan Charge APPG failed to provide sufficient consent around cases of taxpayers contemplating suicide over the April tax.

Approached by ContractorUK yesterday, officials stuck to their guns by indicating that none of the APPG’s 70 submissions had ‘sufficient’ consent -- a “barefaced lie” according to MPs

“The APPG wasn’t able to provide the level of consent required,” a Treasury spokesman said in a statement. “That is the only point we made about the submissions.”

'Specific wording'

The spokesman added that several submissions had “specific wording from [HMRC] customers asking for their information to remain confidential and not to be shared”.

And in some, the taxman was “explicitly” identified as a party whom the customer requested “not to share” their identity or submission with, the HMT spokesman claimed.

“As the APPG is aware, we needed specific written permission for each submission which we did not receive”, the Treasury maintained.

'Suspiciously aggressive'

The claims from officials come after John Thompson, HMRC’s CEO, said he was aware of a loan charge contractor who has committed suicide, after saying he was not.

“So after the initial and suspiciously aggressive denial from Sir John Thompson, HMRC have acknowledged they know of and have reported a suicide of a person facing the loan charge”, reflected the Loan Charge APPG. “Yet they’re still refusing to delay this dangerous policy. Reckless and callous.”

The cross-party MP group also took issue with Mel Stride because despite him reportedly saying he feels “deeply upset and disturbed” at the person’s suicide, the minister and HMRC were both warned last June of people taking their own life to escape the loan charge.

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Written by Simon Moore

Simon writes impartial news and engaging features for the contractor industry, covering, IR35, the loan charge and general tax and legislation.
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