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Tax law

UK Government told child benefit cuts may be discriminatory

The Telegraph reports that the Institute of Chartered Accounts for England and Wales has informed the Government that cutting child benefit for higher earners through the tax system could break European law.

From January 7th 2013, parents earning between £50,000 and £60,000 will lose some of their child benefit on a sliding scale; while any household where one person earns more than £60,000 will lose entitlement to child benefit altogether.

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Doctors avoiding pension taxes by temporarily retiring

According to The Telegraph, more than 200 doctors are avoiding tax on their pensions by retiring for 24 hours in order to exploit a loophole.
Each doctor is saving up to £75,000 by retiring before a change was made to the Lifetime Allowance on April 5 this year.

The Lifetime Allowance is the total capital value of one’s pension, excluding state pension arrangements, which doesn’t attract additional tax.

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Celebrities caught out dodging tax

Several news organisations are today reporting that a tax avoidance scheme, used by more than a thousand British people including comedian Jimmy Carr, is being investigated by HM Revenue & Customs.

The Jersey-based K2 scheme is reported to be protecting £168 million every year from HMRC.

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HMRC blunder means six million get £400 tax refund

Six million tax payers will receive a refund of £400 from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) this weekend as it has made the decision to settle discrepancies from as far back as 2001.

However, 1.2million will be told that they owe £600 as HMRC has to find £620million. (more…)

Law Society to intervene in Prudential case over LPP

The potentially landmark case by Prudential against HM Inspector of Taxes faces another challenge as the Law Society has been granted permission to intervene by the Supreme Court.

Prudential is seeking to extend the principle of legal professional privilege (LPP) to accountants who offer advice on tax law. (more…)

Budget 2011: Inheritance tax reforms to encourage charitable legacies

George Osborne announced £540m worth of tax breaks for charities during his Budget 2011 speech on 23 March. The tax breaks include inheritance tax reforms aimed at encouraging people to leave 10% of their estate to charities.

The Chancellor said his goal is for it to become the norm for every person to leave a charitable legacy in their will when they die. In order to encourage people to do this, he is proposing to reduce the inheritance tax levy on the estates of those who do from 40% to 36%. (more…)

When should you use a tax solicitor versus a tax accountant?

All businesses should have their annual tax return completed by a tax accountant. These professionals not only have the knowledge and skills to ensure that all tax returns are completed on time and are a true and accurate reflection of the business’s tax affairs, HMRC (HM Revenue & Customs) will also appreciate the fact that the return was completed by a recognised (i.e. chartered) accountant.
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What should you do if you are investigated by HM Revenue and Customs?

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) attempts to ensure compliance with tax laws and in order to do this it is able to commence civil and criminal investigations into individuals and businesses.

It is advisable that any person being investigated uses a solicitor who can offer legal advice on how best to proceed, what HMRC are entitled to look at, what documents need to be presented, and so on.

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Tax law Image

The UK tax law system is complex and changes frequently. It is important for both individuals and businesses to keep up to date with these changes, as it is your responsibility to take care of your own tax situation. In our tax law blog, we discuss current issues in tax law, both within the UK and the EU, and occasionally international issues where relevant. Issues explored include: changes to stamp duty laws, inheritance tax planning, capital gains tax, changes to income tax laws or process, self-employed person’s tax management, IR35 and basic business-tax issues.

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