The Deliberate Tax Defaulters list has been posted online by the taxman. This “Tax Offenders’ Register” is updated every 3 months in order to “name and shame” people who have deliberately underdeclared their taxable income or gains. The June 2019 list names 107 individuals and businesses.
Every quarter Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs publishes details of people they’ve investigated and charged penalties: for fraudulent errors in their Tax Returns or deliberately failing to tell HMRC that they should be paying tax. The underdeclared tax has to be more than £25,000. HMRC do not publish in cases where the taxpayer made a voluntary disclosure prior to a tax investigation, or fully cooperates once an investigation has started.
Of course, in addition to being named and shamed these businesses will already have been through the stress of a long in-depth tax investigation. And they will have had to pay all of the back tax and penalties.
The June 2019 list covers 107 individuals and businesses. It includes the usual varied mixtures of businesses including: pubs, restaurants and takeaways (28); building and construction (20); IT, computer services, and internet sellers and services (10); traditional retail, and wholesale (9); rental income, and property sales (5); 32 miscellaneous businesses and trades; and 3 accountancy practices! The largest settlement for HMRC was SS Trades Ltd of Watford, trading in retail and delivery of confectionery, grocery, and soft drinks. They had to pay £1,150,000 in tax plus £643,000 in penalties. The smallest case on the list was Christopher Walker, an agricultural contractor in County Antrim. He had to pay £30,000 in tax plus £11,500 penalties. As is common in these situations, many of these businesses have now closed; as the high penalties charged in a tax investigation – where people are not well advised – are often enough to bring down otherwise successful businesses.
What does this mean for me?
Anyone with tax problems to disclose, or who is under investigation by HMRC, is at risk of being named and shamed. But if your adviser is an experienced tax enquiry specialist then it should be exceptional to end up on this list. Proper representation from a top-quality tax investigations professional will nearly always bring the tax enquiry to a faster end; with much lower penalties; and no naming and shaming.
How can Lynam Tax Investigation Specialists Help Me?
If you have any historic tax problems to disclose, or you’re under enquiry by HMRC, then you should get specialist help. Lynam Tax Enquiry Experts have combined experience of over 90 years – specialising solely with tax investigations. We have settled around a thousand cases with HMRC. Not one of our clients has ever been named and shamed!
NB: For a free, private, no obligation consultation, call today:
Paul Lynam on 0845 643 9997
or Andrew Nutbrown on 07718 778710