Level of HM Revenue & Customs (“HMRC”) enquiries set to increase


Filed Under: UK Business

Following the general election, we have a Conservative Government with a small majority. We therefore have a better idea of the tax policies that will shape the new Government’s approach to economic growth and deficit reduction.

The Government have pledged not to raise some tax rates, to continue to tackle ‘aggressive’ tax avoidance and have proposed to raise £5billion by toughening sanctions against tax evaders. This will certainly increase the level of pressure and scrutiny already faced by HMRC in its efforts to increase the yield from tax enquiries.

HMRC reported a record £23.9billion in compliance yield in 2013/14, more than £3billion up on the previous year and part of a year on year increase since 2010/11. In line with this increase in the yield from compliance activities, there has been a corresponding and marked upturn in the number of enquiries that HMRC open. This trend is set to continue and targets for compliance yielded from tax enquiries are likely to rise to tackle the scale of the economic challenges faced.

Any taxpayer can be subjected to an enquiry by HMRC, in order to check that they have paid the correct amount of tax or are entitled to any reliefs and allowances they may have claimed. As well as the disruption and uncertainty caused by an enquiry, the costs in professional fees can be significant irrespective of whether or not HMRC find any errors.

Against this background it is worthwhile to consider the Tax Investigations Fee Protection service offered by Blick Rothenberg which can protect against the professional fees incurred defending yourself in the event of an enquiry. If we do not currently complete your UK tax returns then, unfortunately, you will not be eligible to
join our service. However, please do not hesitate to get in touch if you would like to discuss our tax compliance services.

For further information on our Fee Protection Service, please contact your usual Blick Rothenberg contact or Tessa Jones, senior compliance manager on +44 (0)20 7544 8826 or at tessa.jones@blickrothenberg.com