HM Revenue and Customs recently announced that a plumber who failed to disclose income tax of £91,000 has been jailed for tax fraud for 12 months.
This case highlights that HM Revenue and Customs are cracking down on tax evasion; clients and their advisers should carefully consider making voluntary disclosures now.
There are a number of disclosure schemes available which may offer benefits such as; reduced penalties, the ability to limit the number of years that HM Revenue and Customs may go back to assess tax, payment of tax by instalments and protection against criminal prosecution.
Current disclosure facilities include:

  • The Liechtenstein Disclosure Facility (LDF) – where taxpayers do not currently have assets in Liechtenstein it may be possible to transfer assets now so as to qualify for the terms of the LDF
  • E-Markets Disclosure Facility – this facility is aimed at people who sell goods or services on online websites (such as eBay or Amazon) and whose activities are treated as a trade for tax purposes
  • Electrician’s Tax Safe Plan (ETSP) – please note that the deadline to notify intention to disclose under this facility is 15 May 2012
  • The UK-Swiss Tax Treaty – whilst not strictly a disclosure facility the impact of the UK-Switzerland Tax Treaty should be considered carefully by those with undisclosed Swiss income.

At Eaves & Co we have experience of preparing voluntary disclosures and have successfully submitted disclosures under the LDF for a number of clients.  For further advice regarding the disclosure of unpaid tax please contact Eaves & Co Specialist Tax Advisors’ Leeds office on 0113 244 3502.

On 14 February 2012 HMRC launched a tax amnesty aimed at electricians called the Electricians’ Tax Safe Plan (ETSP). Initially around 50,000 individuals will be sent letters inviting them to report previously undisclosed earnings.

Individuals who disclose using the ESTP will only have to report undeclared income from the last six tax years and will suffer a reduced penalty of between 10% and 20% of the tax due.

To disclose using the ETSP, the individual must notify HMRC of their intention by 15 May 2012, with the deadline for finalising the disclosure and payment being 14 August 2012.

HMRC have warned that electricians who have undisclosed income and do not come forward may face criminal investigation and prosecution.

If you would like assistance in making a disclosure, Eaves and Co would be happy to assist.  Please call our Leeds office on 0113 2443502.