The HMRC Affluence Unit is responsible for scrutinising the affairs of UK residents with net asset wealth of over £1m, and/or who are taxable at the highest rate: overall about 500,000 taxpayers.
The taxman is aiming to use sophisticated and innovative IT software to analyse information across all its various databases and information sources, checking for discrepancies and anomalies (e.g. someone with a large asset portfolio but with relatively little taxable income). Currently HMRC is focussing on individuals who own property abroad, or hold offshore bank accounts.
In October 2012 (a year after its commencement) the AU was expanded, with an extra 100 Revenue officers - taking the full complement to 300 tax investigators; including specialists in many different areas of taxation. This ramping up of activity means that higher-rate taxpayers face a significantly increased risk of an intrusive tax investigation.
The Affluence Unit is separate from HMRC’s High Net Worth Unit, which targets taxpayers with wealth of over £20 million. But both units have a clear remit to challenge suspected tax avoidance and tax evasion by the UK’s wealthiest. In 2010/11 the 2 units’ yield (of extra tax, interest and penalties) was around £162m.
What does this mean for me?
If you get an enquiry notice from HMRC\'s Affluence Unit then you know that they are aiming to secure a significant payment of extra tax, interest and penalties. The Affluence Unit is staffed by specialists. You need specialist help on your side to deal with this serious tax investigation. Many accountants and tax advisers prefer to outsource the tax enquiry work to specialists such as us. Lynam Tax Enquiry Experts have over 70 years full-time experience of handling HMRC tax enquiries and tax investigations. We have huge experience of dealing with high net-worth individuals and their tax issues; and can be relied upon for integrity and discretion.
If you or your clients are facing a Tax Enquiry from the Affluence Unit please call today for a free and wholly confidential initial no obligation discussion. Call:
Paul Lynam: 0845 643 9997 or
Andrew Nutbrown : 0771 877 8710
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We specialise in managing all Tax Enquiry, Tax Disclosures & Tax Disputes with HMRC.
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