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Keep it quiet

16 October 2012
Issue: 4375 / Categories: Tax cases , Admin
Mr A (TC2217)

The taxpayer was a well-known broadcaster who took part in a marketed tax avoidance scheme which HMRC deemed not to work. He appealed against the department’s subsequent amendment to his tax return.

He applied for the appeal hearing to be heard in private with the resulting decision being published in anonymised form.

The reasons for his application included considerable media interest in tax avoidance schemes in particular in their use by celebrities.

He had already attracted media interest for other reasons much of it hostile and was concerned that adverse comment would increase if the fact he had used a tax avoidance scheme became public knowledge possibly damaging his career and reducing his earning capacity.

The First-tier Tribunal said “The presumption of a public hearing is nowadays stronger than it might have been perceived even a few years ago.”

The fact the taxpayer...

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