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Have any contractor accountants’ clients used the LDF?

Have any contractor accountants’ clients used the LDF?

Since its launch in 2009, the Liechtenstein Disclosure Facility has yielded HMRC £140 million, the government department’s latest figures have revealed.

Originally, the Revenue expected to yield £1 billion from the LDF by 2015 but the figure has been revised to £3 billion after the encouraging uptake.

By the 31st March this year, 1,351 people had registered their intent to take advantage of the lower penalties offered by the LDF. In March 2010, just 419 registrations had been received.

Phil Berwick from McGrigors pointed out that there has been a consistent increase in the number of registrations but he still believes HMRC will not reach its revised £3 billion total.

He went on to say that uncertainties surrounding a possible deal with the Swiss government is preventing people coming forward. As soon as the deal is announced, more people will have an incentive to register.

The head of tax at law firm Lass Salt Garvin, Frank Strachan, said it will be interesting to note whether more people will sign up by this September. He also remarked that clients are waiting to know the details of the Swiss arrangements before signing up.

Meanwhile, HMRC took another step in the right direction in its battle against tax avoidance after winning a case in the Supreme Court.

The case involved offsetting capital allowances on software purchases against income which left the partnership in question with a minimal tax bill. HMRC claimed the partnership had artificially paid too much for software rights and recycled the money back into the company to repay a bank loan.

Although the Court of Appeal had previously ruled in favour of the partnership, the Supreme Court said it had to consider the real cost of the software.

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Image: I Know It’s Unfair… by [casey]

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