HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) have announced that private tutors are the next tax avoidance target in narrowing the UK tax gap…
In HMRC’s mission to tighten the net on tax avoidance and tax evasion in the UK, private tutors are the next group of professionals that will be under a tax investigation.
With a new ‘affluent’ team of over 2,000 tax inspectors set to investigate the 350,000 wealthiest tax payers in the UK and premiership footballers. Next month, the Revenue plan to focus on lower-level tax avoidance cheats, including private tutors and fitness coaches.
This step from HMRC may have a big impact as there are many teachers that supplement their pay outside of school hours with cash in hand private tutoring.
HMRC’s private tutor campaign will follow suite with previous professionals – doctors, plumbers, and dentists – who have been targeted to voluntarily come forward and pay any undeclared tax and avoid large tax penalties, or even worse criminal tax prosecution.
A spokesman for HMRC has said that there is a ‘significant enough minority’ of private tutors who do not pay taxes they owe, in order for the Revenue to be disconcerted.
‘Web robot’ technology will be used to find individuals and companies online. Information collected about their financial affairs will then be used to ‘pursue people who choose not to use opportunities’ provided by HMRC to ‘put their affairs in order on the best possible terms’, he added.
In a recent announcement, HMRC has said how the UK tax gap has fallen £4bn to £35bn in 2009/2010; most of the uncollected £35bn is due to tax fraud committed through tax avoidance and tax evasion.
(Click here to read ‘HMRC look to tax avoidance and tax evasion to close the £35bn tax gap’)
The Revenues recent step up in the regulation of tax avoidance and tax evasion tactics comes in their bid to crack down on tax fraud in the UK and an improving the £35bn tax gap of uncollected tax.
In recent weeks HMRC have signed a major deal with Swiss banks to tackle tax evasion and offshore assets, launched an investigation into tax avoidance loopholes within premiership football transfers and established an ‘affluent’ team of tax investigators to specifically target the wealthiest tax payers in the UK.
Kevin Kinsella Jnr, of KinsellaTax, said:
“Previous disclosure opportunities offered by HMRC have failed to be deemed a success. The doctor’s tax amnesty only brought in £10m for the Revenue and their recent clamping down on plumbers has not even raised half a million pounds.
“I am doubtful as to how successful a tax amnesty targeted at private tutors will be in helping to reduce the tax gap in the UK.
“Could more people be used to reduce the £35bn pounds said to be outstanding, instead of setting up more schemes that really produce small results.
“There is £35bn out there that needs collecting.”
If you have been teaching academic subjects, sports and music outside of classroom hours and haven’t declared your additional income, you need to declare it to HMRC.
A disclosure to HMRC gives way to lower tax penalties. This is better done sooner rather than later.
Don’t wait any longer, get it sorted NOW before HMRC catch you.