The Telegraph reports that Judge Nicholas Aleksander has told HMRC its behaviour was "ridiculous" and "a scandal" after HMRC attempted to fine a homeless man £1,600 for filing his tax return late.
The man, who had been a self-employed electrician, briefly returned to his native Poland in around April 2014 where he said his drink had been spiked with drugs causing him to lose his job and exhaust his savings when he returned to Britain.
He said he was evicted from the house in east London where he had been living and all his belongings were lost or stolen, including important documents.
He said he had been forced to sleep on the streets until moving into a hostel in January 2017, which led to him finding a job and permanent accommodation in April of that year.
HMRC issued penalties of £1,600, saying it had sent reminders to his previous address.
Judge Nicholas Aleksander found against HMRC.
The judgement reads:
“HMRC's decision to pursue this man for penalties in the circumstances of this appeal is a scandal. For HMRC to expect a homeless person to keep HMRC up-to-date with their address is ridiculous – and just needs to be stated to show its absurdity.”
HMRC is ridiculous!
Tax does have to be taxing.
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