Government & HMRC Target Offshore Account Tax Evaders

Feb 24

The government has raised a campaign against tax evaders recently which is targeted at people that hide assets and large sums of cash abroad. HMRC are helping to champion this campaign through the use of TV commercials, radio adverts and press releases warning people who may be hiding money in offshore accounts that they are “closing in on them”. Previous attempts at a successful anti-tax evasion campaign have fallen short of what most may consider to be acceptable results, however, HMRC are confident that they have it right this time.
The message from HMRC is that people who may be hiding assets and money abroad should contact HMRC immediately to avoid any future fines that may be applicable of up to 200% of the amount of tax owed. Although HMRC are aware that they face challenges surrounding precisely what is hidden abroad they are receiving a lot more help from countries who are willing to divulge a great deal more information than they have been used to in order to help tackle the investigatory hurdles.

George Osborne has commented by adding a related view on how larger corporate firms are avoiding tax in a shady manor by shifting profits around the globe in an attempt to avoid paying significant tax bills and whilst the big corporate companies are almost certainly playing by the rules, some consider their tactics to be an insult given that a lot of business is generated here in the UK.HMRC have mentioned that most people do the right thing and inform them of any and all offshore money, however, for the few that have chosen not to inform the HMRC with the relevant information they have said that the “net is closing in around them”.

I believe that in the most part, people are honest and up-standing individuals that just want to contribute wherever possible, however, I can see HMRC’s point of view here as some individuals may have chosen to keep their assets and parts of their wealth a secret from the authorities for personal gain, instead of benefiting the collective; the collective being the rest of the UK tax payers. It’s a necessity of life; paying taxes is something that should be factored into any business or lifestyle and cannot be neglected.

We provide advice to UK directors every day and we come across people who have business tax challenges. Tax in all forms should be paid when due, If you do have problems in the form of corporation tax, vat, or paye you must seek advice immediately. and factoring these essential overheads in well in advance can sometimes mean the difference between keeping your business and becoming a success, or losing it and gaining business debt.

As always, clearly everyone needs to be up front and honest with HMRC and the relevant authorities to make your life easier.

Written by: Mike Smith

 

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