A report from the House of Lords economic affairs committee criticising HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) for the 2019 Loan Charge had been welcomed by agencies representing contracting professionals including Qdos Contractor, IPSE, and WTT Consulting.
Recently other experts have also welcomed the report that indicates that the tax agency has been abusing power. The report has been endorsed by The Loan Action Group, Paul Spindler, a former partner at Kingston Smith chartered accountancy firm, and Chris Leslie, a former head investigator at HMRC.
Report Rightly Criticised Actions of HMRC
According to Mr. Leslie who was previously associated with the Revenue, the tax agency should have taken ‘reasonable discretion’ regarding the Loan Charge.
The report heavily criticised HMRC for not pursuing taxpayers according to their circumstances. The Economic Affairs Committee had been appalled about the practice that had caused great ‘anguish’.
Mr. Leslie who is now the head of Tax Networks Ltd. has stated that the extent of enquiries carried out by the tax authority should have been proportionate to the tax risk. The Lords report has done a good job in highlighting the inequalities in carrying out the investigations.
He had stated that the actions of HMRC are ‘concerning’. The newly trained investigators are given a lot of power in order to achieve results and increase revenues. He said that the parliament should not let this continue.
In addition, Mr. Spindler who was formerly associated with a chartered taxation firm had said the report makes it clear that the tax authority was given too much power in probing taxpayers.
He pointed out that Contractor Loan Settlement Opportunity was simply absurd that reflects mismanagement by HMRC of the process of enquiry to recover taxes.
Another professional agency that had sounded less sympathetic to the cause of HMRC was the Loan Charge Action Group (LCAG). The agency has said that the report has depicted that HMRC had taken an aggressive stance in its pursuit of taxpayers who had been caught by the retrospective Loan Charge.
The group had cited another report of the House of Lords regarding unfair treatment by HMRC that found that the tax agency has profoundly failed to target the scheme providers. This is contrary to the claims made in the House of Commons by the Treasury.
According to the agency, the tide is now turning against the tax agency. With the support from the House of Lords and also hundreds of cross-party MPs, it’s time that HMRC is held accountable for its unfair treatment of taxpayers and amidst the unethical legislation.