A no-deal Brexit cannot be “managed” and is “certainly not desirable,” said Carolyn Fairbairn, Confederation of British Industry director general, as business leaders expressed frustration over the continued political impasse.
“The responsibility to ensure an orderly exit is now in Parliament’s hands. Each MP is democratically chosen to safeguard the security and prosperity of our country. And next week they face a test. If they meet it with yet more brinkmanship, the whole country could face a no-deal, disorderly Brexit. The economic consequences would be profound, widespread, and lasting,” Fairbairn told a business audience in Bristol January 11…
My news story for Tax Notes (paywall), published January 12:
U.K. Business Leaders Vent Frustration Ahead of Brexit Vote
Other stories published in week of January 7:
Labour Leader Prioritizes Election and a New Brexit Deal
MPs Vote to Tighten Grip on Brexit Process
‘Stormont Lock’ Fails to Win DUP Support for Brexit Backstop
Brexit dominates the political agenda, but it is by no means the only issue on tax professionals’ minds. Some of the challenges facing tax advisers were addressed by the House of Lords economic affairs committee in December. The committee’s report is essential reading for policymakers.
Concerns expresses by nine tax specialists in my article for a Tolley Tax supplement (not available online) to the January 2019 edition of Tax Adviser included the complexity of tax law, the impact of automation, the quality of HMRC’s service, and the department’s approach to avoidance and evasion.
HM Revenue & Customs is seeking feedback on existing processes for amending tax returns, as the January 31 self-assessment deadline approaches with more than 5.5 million returns outstanding.
My news story (paywall) for Tax Notes, January 3:
HMRC Consults on Tax Return Processes as Deadline Approaches
A key aim of the Making Tax Digital service is to ‘close the tax gap due to errors with people making their VAT returns’, according to HMRC. An alternative – and perhaps better – way to deploy technology to improve compliance is set out in an Office of Tax Simplification report. Better HMRC guidance, the OTS says, is likely to lead to more accurate tax reporting and ‘help to close the tax gap, as taxpayers should have a better understanding of HMRC’s view of the law’. Read more:
My article for Accounting and Business January 2019, published (free to view) by ACCA.
HM Revenue & Customs could use its “care and management” powers to reach a compromise with taxpayers facing the 2019 loan charge and avoid resorting to bankruptcy proceedings, a tax expert told members of Parliament.
“My personal viewpoint is that HMRC does have discretion to enter into a settlement arrangement with these individuals,” Chartered Institute of Taxation President Ray McCann told the House of Commons Treasury Subcommittee on December 10, in response to questions about the retroactive charge. My news story for Tax Notes (paywall), December 11, also published in the December 17 edition of Tax Notes International:
HMRC Discretion Is Key to Resolving Loan Charge Dispute, MPs Told