HM Customs and Revenue (HMRC) has released a list of over 800 schemes that they believe are deliberately designed for tax avoidance reasons.

Once HMRC receives its upgraded legal powers in August, they will be demanding the disputed amounts as “accelerated payments”.

High-profile celebrities including footballer David Beckham and singer Katie Melua have been identified as members of such schemes.

It is believed that approximately 33,000 people will be receiving tax demands from HMRC over the course of the next two years.

The individuals in question will be given 90 days to pay the charges, and can only get be reimbursed if a court rules in their favour.

This could cause major cash flow problems for many businesses, and accountants are fearful that a number of individuals could be declared bankrupt as a result of the list being released.

HMRC stated that the list only contains Scheme References Numbers (SRNs) because the names of those involved in the schemes do not have to be revealed.

But those completing a tax return will need to include the number on the form, so they will be able to determine if they will be asked for a payment.

A number of the schemes that have come under public scrutiny in recent weeks, such as Icebreaker and Ingenious media, require investors to pump money into business ventures designed to make losses. Examples of these schemes include investments in the film and music industries.

The scheme’s losses can be offset against income, which reduces the liability for tax. However, many of these schemes are perfectly legal.

If you have received a HMRC tax demand, call us today on 0800 471 4546for a confidential chat with one of our tax avoidance experts.

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