As well as having access to your own bank account and raiding them, HMRC are seeking further powers to actually raid your ISA’s. This is in addition to taking money directly from current accounts which also include joint accounts, so your partner may not owe tax – you do – and the money in there may be mostly your partners BUT as it’s a joint account it will suffer from a raid from HMRC.
A tax free ISA is now being considered for further demands from HMRC whether the ISA is held in cash or stocks and shares. You only need to owe £1,000 or more in tax, so it could affect quite a number of people. It was in the budget for March and there’s a public consultation which ends on the 29th July.
The HMRC are hopeful to raise £375 million over the next four years under the Direct Recovery of Debts powers due to come in force later this year. The prediction is that around 17 thousand people a year will have money taken from them; the majority of course, will be self employed people. There is a provision that HMRC say they will keep to but there we are – let’s see – there must be at least £5,000 left in the account so you won’t be absolutely skint – according to HMRC – but having regularly dealt with HM faux pas over the past 30 years I think this is all going to go badly wrong.
The government is already stoking up support by statements such as “it will help to level the playing field between those who pay what they owe when they owe it and those who do not”.
As we know, tax avoidance is now a dirty word. In fact I heard on Question Time the chap running it, David Dimbleby, state that tax avoidance was now criminal – he was wrong – he meant tax evasion but there you are how easy it slips off ones tongue. So that legal tax avoidance schemes are now frowned upon so much so there is an outcry whenever we found out that one of the celebrities seeks to try and lower his tax by what appears to be legal methods.
So be it if the so called scheme is later outlawed then of course the person who has sufficient money, let’s face it, to repay tax that is due and owing. I know very poor tax payers who have gone out of business; they owe £1,000 – £1,500 and they just haven’t got it. But these guys at least have got the money there and will be able to pay up. I’m sure Mr Barlow will be able to pay up very easily but you know there is no reason to make him sound like a criminal in my view.
I see there is a statement actually saying “Cheats who fail to pay their taxes and others who find ways of avoiding them, not evading them, avoiding them cost Britain around £35 billion a year” according to HMRC. Again tax avoidance is not criminal, tax evasion is but there we are.
It pays the HMRC to issue these statements therefore, all those who actually are paying tax isn’t finding it hard to get by will at least support these moves. As indeed it is only why the HMRC do recover as much in taxes as they possibly can.