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HMRC decides more consultation needed on tax agents

HMRC decides more consultation needed on tax agents

An extension of nearly 2 months has been granted on the consultation period for HMRC’s new draft law on “deliberate wrongdoing”. The proposal “Working With Tax Agents: The Next Stage” will now be under discussion until 28th April, the Chartered Institute of Taxation was recently told by the government department.

There have been concerns raised by the CIOT and several contractor accountants over the wording of the law which they feel could be applied to anybody handing out tax advice as opposed to just those who are indulging in illegal activities.

The way the wording in the proposal stands at the moment, somebody having a pint in the pub with his friends could be fined for talking about tax tips.

One of the primary aims of the consultation is to find a way to deal with tax agents who deliberately give their clients dishonest advice, i.e. acting fraudulently, in order to reduce the client’s tax liability. Anyone found guilty of ‘deliberate wrongdoing’ would be fined between £1,500 to £50,000.

A spokesman from HMRC has confirmed that “This legislation only tackles people who are doing something illegal, it will not touch anyone giving out honest advice.”

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Image: Not ready!!! by practicalowl

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