The threshold, set by HMRC, is meant to ensure that people who make errors over relatively small sums of tax do not receive a prison sentence of up to six months.
However, CIOT want the threshold to be raised to £25,000.
John Cullinane of CIOT is quoted by Contractor UK:
“We are pleased to note that there will be a statutory defence of reasonable care.As ever with HMRC, the concept of innocent until proven guilty doesn't apply!
This will be vital in limiting the scope of the offence.
But it would be a stronger safeguard for the taxpayer if the burden of proof was on HMRC to prove that reasonable care had not been taken, rather than being on the taxpayer to prove they took reasonable care.
We are also concerned that this proposal could be counterproductive for HMRC because the fear of prosecution, with no need to prove intention on HMRC’s part, could discourage taxpayers from coming forward voluntarily.”
Tax does have to be taxing.
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