The next stage of HMRC’s taskforces to deal with tax evasion has been revealed, and will target professional sector such as the legal profession in order to recover unpaid tax. After HMRC previously targeted self employed workers and businesses, such as market stall holders and taxi firms, this latest move is expected to bring in around £19.5 million in additional tax revenue.
As well as legal professionals based in London the taskforces will also target other trades across the country, including grocery and retail, hair and beauty, restaurants and the motor trade. The taskforces are part of the government overall plan to raise an additional £7 billion, otherwise lost to tax evasion, by 2014/15.
HMRC’s Director General for Enforcement and Compliance, Mike Eland reiterated that people who are paying the correct tax need not worry, and it is only those who are evading tax that HMRC are targeting. He again warned, “This is not an empty threat – HMRC can and will track you down if you choose to break the rules. We are on target to collect more than £50 million as a result of taskforces launched in 2011/12.”
The CIOT’s Gary Ashford, also commented on HMRC further taskforces, saying; “The range of groups targeted in this latest announcement shows how widely HMRC are casting their net – from high street barbers to High Court barristers.”
Mr Ashford confirmed that there have already been at least 13 criminal investigations as a result of the tax evasion taskforces, showing that HMRC are getting increasingly tough in order to reach their £7 billion target. He continued to warn any concerned workers to see professional advice, whether they are in a sector affected by the taskforces or not.
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