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Criminal factor

15 September 2015 / Helen Adams , Claire Shelemay
Issue: 4518 / Categories: Comment & Analysis , Avoidance
HMRC are tipping the scales in their favour to tackle tax evasion. 
  • HMRC’s civil powers for tackling evasion are extensive and include tax-geared penalties.
  • Changes in the pipeline include increasing offshore penalties and the merger of HMRC’s Specialist Investigations and Criminal Investigations teams.
  • HMRC’s four recent consultation documents on offshore tax evasion provide information on the proposed strict deterrents and severe penalties.
HMRC’s specialist investigators use the contractual disclosure facility (code of practice 9) to encourage taxpayers to disclose suspected tax fraud. Those who ignore the opening letter initialising the process or who fail to make a full disclosure will be investigated either with a view to a criminal prosecution or using civil powers. The civil powers for tackling evasion and deliberate errors are considerable and include:
  • the power to obtain...

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