HMRC revenue rises as tax avoidance is tackled

Wednesday 11 January 2017

Revenues at HMRC have risen as the body takes drastic action to cut down on the number of businesses avoiding tax payments. 

According to the law firm RPC, HRMC paid £460,000 to individuals in 2015 in order to pick up tips regarding tax evaders, with the payment varying depending on how much tax HMRC expects to recover because of the information given. 

Recent government proposals have been created to target individuals found guilty of tax evasion and those who help them, with penalties for accountants, tax planners and advisers all expected to be featured in the 2017 Finance Bill. 

Adam Craggs, a tax partner at RPC, said: “The hundreds of thousands of pounds HMRC is paying out every year to informants reflects the pressure they are under from the exchequer to increase the tax yield.

“However, there have been questions raised over whether it is right for HMRC to pay for what could be regarded as stolen data. It may encourage more data theft and create the perception that the UK government is turning a blind eye to theft.”

Following high-profile investigations such as the Panama Papers, it would not be surprising if the government spent more money and resources on tackling the problem. 

With this in mind, it could be the financial sector that is at most risk of being caught out, especially if they are not up to date with the latest regulations regarding tax. Particularly small companies could be in particular danger if they do not have the resources available to manage their tax. 

For these professionals, it may be best to utilise a self-employed specialist to deal with tax legislation, as they can make sure you do not make any significant errors that can lead to significant fines and potential reputational damage. 

By hiring an expert accountant, companies can make sure their finances are in order and 100 per cent legal. Even though many of the government’s investigations will be focused on holders of large sums of money, anyone not paying the right amount of tax is at risk of substantial fines. 

Thankfully, these problems do not need to happen as long as experienced freelance accountants are put in charge of your finances, who can make sure everything is proper and that you earn the most money available to you without accidentally breaking the law. 


By Victoria McDonnell

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