HMRC never ‘approve’ tax avoidance schemes
HMRC have updated the ‘Spotlights’ page of their website to make clear that tax avoidance schemes are never ‘approved’ by HMRC.
It seems that some promoters of tax avoidance schemes imply that their scheme has been approved because HMRC has given it a Scheme Reference Number (SRN). HMRC stress that the issue of an SRN does not mean either that HMRC ‘approves’ the scheme or that HMRC accept that the scheme achieves its intended tax advantage.
The Spotlights page is intended to help accountants and taxpayers understand what HMRC are likely to see as unacceptable tax avoidance. Included are a list of tax planning features that should give cause for concern. Also included are ten specific schemes which, in HMRC’s view, are not likely to deliver the tax savings advertised by their promoters.
Spotlight 10: Stamp Duty Land Tax avoidance (7 June 2010)
Spotlight 9: Gift Aid with no real gift (29 March 2010)
Spotlight 8: Investments to obtain trade loss reliefs (‘sideways loss relief’) (8 February 2010)
Spotlight 7: Avoidance using Gift Aid (6 January 2010)
Spotlight 6: Employer-Financed Retirement Benefits Scheme (EFRBS)
Spotlight 5: Using trusts and similar entities to reward employees – PAYE and NICs, Corporation Tax and Inheritance Tax
Spotlight 4: Contrived ployment liabilities and losses
Spotlight 3: Pensions schemes artificial surplus
Spotlight 2: VAT artificial leasing
Spotlight 1: Goodwill – companies acquiring businesses carried on prior to 1 April 2002 by a related party