My thanks to a loyal reader who has posted a comment that lifts the lid on what is really happening in HMRC, specifically staff in Compliance are being told to treat all errors on tax returns as "deliberate" unless proven otherwise!
That does not square with HMRC's Charter, that pretends taxpayers are to be treated as "honest".
Guilty until proven innocent is a disgusting approach, and reveals the mindset of those "running" HMRC.
The loyal reader also makes a very good point that those who send in tax returns are most likely doing their best to pay their taxes, it's those who evade taxes that HMRC should be chasing:
"Treat you as honest" How does that square with the fact that staff in Compliance are being told that the default setting for errors in returns is "deliberate" unless the taxpayer or agent can prove otherwise. Deliberate is the most serious misdemeanour below the top "deliberate and concealed" carrying heavier financial penalties than "careless error".I have a challenge for our "respected" politicians, given that the complexity of our tax system (which causes people to make errors when submitting tax returns) is a direct result of your legislation, complete your tax returns yourselves (and interact with HMRC) without using the services of tax advisers, agents or lawyers.
Senior managers are analysing settlements and if some teams are showing fewer/ lesser penalties than others they want to know why. In primary compliance a lot of errors in self assessment returns are down to the difficulty of the return itself and Income Tax in general.
In many cases the people who try to be compliant [ after all they are making returns and paying tax]are being punished whilst ghosts and moonlighters are paying nothing [ helped by the removal of most local Tax offices.]"
Let's see how well you fare with the system that you created, without the aid of paid professionals!
Please tweet this, and spread the word, if you feel that politicians should complete their own tax returns.
Tax does have to be taxing.
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