HMRC chasing tax on employee accommodation

Employers who used benefit trusts to minimise tax and NIC payments on accommodation provided to employees are invited to come forward to HMRC.

Issuing its "time-limited" invitation, the Revenue said users of such schemes could agree to settle the full tax liabilities without having to face the tribunal or the courts.

The arrangements, typically providing accommodation via an Employee Benefit Trust, were challenged by HMRC and legislation followed in the Finance Act 2009.

Both employees and employers now have a 2-month window to offer to pay the tax and NIC arising from lease premium schemes whether EBTs were used or not.

According to the initiative, the Revenue wants no less than the full amount of tax and NICs due on the benefit of the employer-provided accommodation, plus any interest.

The offer applies to leases entered into for a period of 24 months or less, and on those entered into or extended before April 22, 2009, HMRC said online.

It added: "This initiative provides the opportunity for cases to be settled without recourse to the Tribunal or the Courts, minimising costs to customers and to HMRC and ensuring certainty. But HMRC remains resolved to challenge the arrangements in litigation if necessary."

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