Tax informants could be enjoying lucrative careers
For most people, their own tax affairs are about as much as they can manage when it comes to keeping track of their expenses and working out how much they owe. However, those who work within the system and are dealing with others’ tax affairs on a daily basis are privy to a considerable amount of data that would spark the interest of anyone at HM Revenue and Customs.
The last year has seen more and more of these people coming forward to share what they know, informing on those who are abusing the tax system by failing to pay what they owe. This means that a record sum has been paid out to those who have informed on the tax cheats, amounting to £605,000 which has gone to whistle-blowers in the last twelve months.
In the year to 31st March 2015, HMRC had paid out around 50% more than they had the previous year, which had totalled just £402,000, according to law firm RPC. The increase is believed to have been driven by the pressure on HMRC to increase their tax yield and the subsequent increase in awareness on the part of the public as to the prevalence of tax dodgers.
However, it is not just the general public who are coming forward with information about those who aren’t playing by the rules. The largest increase in tax informants has come from the professional financial services sector, where those who are managing the abusers affairs are motivated, not just by the idea that they could be helping HMRC to claim what is owed to the nation’s coffers, but also with financial incentives payable for information which helps the department to catch those who are failing to contribute.
This is not widely publicised by HMRC as they are concerned that members of the public would be less likely to inform on colleagues, friends or family member for free if they knew that others were being paid for such information. Whilst this may be true, RPC are keen to point out that many people believe that the information they have is more useful than it actually is, so although the taxman is keen for people to come forward, there are no guarantees about how much they could receive in return.
Anyone who works for themselves and wants to be sure that their finances are beyond reproach could make use of our guide to contractor tax which could help you to understand your responsibilities. Our take home pay calculator could give you a rough idea of what your liabilities may be, and our guide to expenses will help you to work out what you are allowed to claim.
If you want to take all the stress out of dealing with HMRC, our low-cost, fixed-fee accountancy packages are perfect for the busy independent professional, so call us today on 01442 275789 or email email@example.com