Tax chiefs chase £250m

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has sent notices to tax avoidance scheme users to pay over £250 million of disputed tax under its new Accelerated Payments regime.

Accelerate Payments apply to avoidance schemes on an HMRC list and enables HMRC to demand upfront payment of tax while schemes remain in dispute with HMRC.

More than 600 Accelerated Payment notices had been sent since August, giving recipients 90 days to pay the tax demanded.

Financial Secretary to the Treasury David Gauke said on 21 October: “Accelerated Payments are changing the economics of avoidance by removing the cash flow advantage that avoidance scheme users have had until now. It is only fair that those who use avoidance schemes should have to pay their tax upfront, like the vast majority of other taxpayers.”

HMRC says that by January 2015 it will be issuing 2,500 Accelerated Payment notices per month and is on track to deliver notices to 43,000 tax avoidance scheme users, covering £7.1 billion of disputed tax, by the end of March 2016.

Anyone receiving an accelerated payment notice would be wise to take professional advice, which is where our experts at Taxation-Investigation can help.

We can also assist people who expect to receive an accelerated payments notice, because their scheme appears on the HMRC list, by advising on the most appropriate course of action, including negotiating payment terms with HMRC if funds to pay the tax requested are limited.

Taxation-Investigation’s expert team includes ex-HMRC staff, giving us a real understanding of the way HMRC works, and we have a strong track record in dealing with matters quickly and cost effectively.

For more information on our tax investigation services, please contact us.