Bad humour is an evasion of reality; good humour is an acceptance of it.
- Malcolm Muggeridge.
Those of you following this blog will be aware that HMRC have been gearing up for a crackdown on tax evasion. As we've posted previously:
New penalties of up to 200% can now be applied for anyone caught evading tax via offshore holdings;
Two amnesties are currently under way: the LDF and the PTSP; and,
The Chancellor announced an additional £900m funding for HMRC specifically to target evasion.
The media reports today that, in line with this new approach, HMRC has doubled the number of officers dealing with evasion cases.
David Gauke, exchequer secretary to the Treasury, said: “This government has invested £900m in HMRC to crack down on people who break the rules. Expanding these teams will help make sure that we bring in the additional money that the UK needs. They aim to stop tax losses and increase tax yields by more than half a billion pounds over the next four years. Gangmasters who think they can exploit their staff and the tax system need to think again.”
This is likely to be only the first step in a long process to restore funds to the Treasury's coffers so if you think you are non-compliant, you should act now to rectify matters. It's worth bearing in mind that any penalty applied will be dependent on the level of cooperation; an unsolicited disclosure is likely to attract a much lower penalty.
If you would like more information on your tax returns please ask our live chat team any questions and queries you have.