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Tackling tax avoidance is high on the government’s agenda

Tackling tax avoidance is high on the government’s agenda

Accountants for contractors might like to know that both PM David Cameron and his deputy Nick Clegg have indicated that a general anti-avoidance rule will probably be included in this year’s budget.

Nick Clegg, the Deputy Prime Minister, said in a recent BBC interview that the government has received a report from Graham Aaronson QC pointing out that a GAAR is feasible. He also attacked the rich elite who spend a fortune employing an army of accountants to help them avoid paying tax.

Clegg was also quick to point out that normal taxpayers, who are struggling to make ends meet, are becoming increasingly angry and frustrated with large companies that avoid paying their fair share of tax. A GAAR would lead to a simpler, more transparent tax system that is not open to abuse.

David Cameron recently explained that HMRC collects taxes in a fair, business-friendly manner. However, the government needs to take a tougher approach with companies that practice tax avoidance with the help of fancy corporate lawyers. Lawyers and tax accountants know that the current legal and taxation systems are complex and they try to capitalise on this to lower their client’s tax bills.

The government is pushing on with its plan to reduce the rate of corporation tax that businesses need to pay. But the fact remains that they have to pay rather than avoid the tax, Cameron added.

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Image: I Can’t See You… by tropical.pete

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