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News briefing, 17 Jan 2014

Jan 17, 2014, 08:53 AM
Authors : Taxation
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Post date : Jan 17, 2014, 09:00 AM

Avoidance & evasion

HMRC have more than doubled their takings from investigations into big companies that set up offshore trusts to pay employees' salaries and bonuses.
Financial Times

It is good news that HMRC’s anti-avoidance efforts are beginning to pay off – but as one avoidance scheme closes another often opens. It is noticeable the Revenue’s successes merit a mention only in the Pink ‘Un by the knowledgeable Vanessa Houlder – whereas their (sometimes alleged) failings get trumpeted in the tabloids.


More than 1.2m self-employed workers make errors when filing HMRC returns and miss deadlines for paying tax.

The UK tax legislation is complex. A self-employed taxpayer with no adviser is bound to make errors resulting in too much or too little tax being paid.


Wealthy individuals living in the UK could fall foul of changes to rules governing the status of non-domiciled (non-dom) residents if they cannot account for their movements over a 14-year period.
Financial Times

The point is that the higher charge of £50,000 applies to non-doms who claim remittance basis and have not been resident for 12 years out of the past 14. It may be difficult for some to prove they do not fall into that category. That said, FT the story is based on musings by accountants Wilkins Kennedy…

Self assessment

More than 100,000 child benefit claimants affected by the government's tax change have not yet signed up to fill in self assessment forms, with two weeks to go before they risk facing fines.

This is the situation predicted by the tax profession when the plan to cut child benefit was introduced by the Treasury.


Golf clubs could receive VAT repayments worth thousands of pounds, following an EU ruling regarding how they charge non-members to play.

The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) ruled that green fees paid by visiting non-members of not-for-profit golf clubs should be exempt from VAT in line with fees paid by members. Assuming the Upper Tribunal adheres to the CJEU’s ruling – and there is no reason to suppose it will not – clubs will be in line for repayments. Read our case report – and look out for Neil Warren’s article in next week’s issue.

Fish and chip shop owners have revived their attempt to end VAT on their meals, by putting their case before the European courts.

There can be no confusion over whether or not fish and chips should be served hot – unlike pasties, the subject of a VAT debacle not so long ago – so it’s unlikely their applicable rate will be altered.

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