The TV presenter Adrian Chiles has won a seven-year battle with HMRC, and saved £400K-500K in taxes.
HMRC claimed that he was not a freelancer when
working for the BBC and ITV between 2012 and 2017, despite Mr Chiles
having worked as a contractor through his own limited company since
HMRC argued he should have paid more tax
as an employee of the broadcasters, where he worked on BBC programmes
such as The One Show, Match of the Day 2 and The Apprentice: You're
Fired, as well as on Daybreak and as a football commentator at ITV.
HMRC said Mr Chiles owed £1.2m in income taxes and almost £500,000 in National Insurance.
The case was part of a wider crackdown on “disguised employees” who
reduce their tax bills by funnelling their income through personal
Such arrangements allow an individual to set up a company and pay
themselves via a mixture of salary and dividends to save on tax, even if
they do not hire any staff.
Employees pay income tax at 20pc of earnings up to £50,270 and 40pc
above, plus NI at 12pc, while contractors typically pay corporation tax
at 19pc and lower NI rates of 9pc, while dividends are taxed at rates
starting from 7.5pc.
However, a tribunal ruled there was “no suggestion Mr Chiles set
out to avoid paying tax” through his company Basic Broadcasting
Dave Chaplin of tax advice firm IR35 Shield is quoted by the Telegraph as saying that Mr Chiles had been
the “victim of a very poorly run investigation by HMRC inspectors”.
“The tax office has put him through the wringer, both
mentally and financially, due to the massive costs of having to defend
himself, despite always paying his taxes correctly.”
Despite winning the case, Mr Chiles will still have to pay his own legal fees.
A spokesman for HMRC said the tax authority would “carefully analyse the outcome of the tribunal before considering next steps”.Tax does have to be taxing.
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