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Dedicated to the taxpayers of Britain, and the employees of Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC), who have to endure the monumental shambles that is HMRC.
Thursday, 14 May 2009
Snouts in The Trough - No Special Rules For MPs
From the horse's mouth (HMRC) itself:
"There are no special capital gains tax rules covering MPs' homes."
Does this mean that MP's, in the event that they have underpaid tax, may expect a tax investigation going back several years? That is what would happen to the rest of us, were we to find ourselves in this situation.
It would be a salutary lesson for the people who gave HMRC its extra powers, and who politicised it, to be on the receiving end of one of its investigations. It might even bring MPs closer to the people!
I assume that the offending MPs will be named and shamed by HMRC!
Source The Times:
"Was HM Revenue & Customs warned several years ago that MPs were playing fast and loose with the tax system as regards their homes? So claims Thomas Casagranda, an HMRC employee, who says that he highlighted for his local compliance team the use of second homes by MPs and whether this should be taxed. "My idea was instantly shot down in flames by a manager and I was told that if I looked at a local MP’s tax returns, I would face conduct and disciplinary procedures."
As Ken Frost, a long-time critic of the taxman who drew Casagranda's letter to my attention, points out, if the profits from second homes are not taxable, then repayments by Blears et al would be a tax overpayment. If they are taxable, then they owe interest and fines.
The HMRC ducks the issue. "We cannot discuss identifiable individuals' tax affairs. The capital gains tax relief for people’s homes applies to only one residence at any one time," they tell me. "More than one home can qualify for relief at the same time but it will completely depend on the facts of the case. There are no special capital gains tax rules covering MPs' homes."
Tax does have to be taxing.
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