HM Revenue & Customs to launch tax amnesty

HM Revenue & Customs has said that is planning to offer those with unpaid taxes a last chance offer to own up to their undeclared earnings.

HM Revenue & Customs has said that is planning to offer those with unpaid taxes a last chance offer to own up to their undeclared earnings.

This is the first time the organisation has offered a tax amnesty to all earners and it hopes the move will provide a notable boost to its income for the year.

According to the Telegraph, the Policy Director of the Chartered Institute of Taxation, John Whiting, said: "This is all about encouraging as many people as possible to come into the system, regularise their affairs and get back on the straight and narrow. The overwhelming majority of the workforce pay their taxes on time and in full. This is about clamping down on the minority who don't."

Those with unpaid tax will not only need to repay their tax, they will also be penalised and charged three per cent annual interest on what they owe.

The organisation has said it will go easy on those who make use of this period of amnesty although there are no guarantee they will avoid court.

HMRC will focus on four main areas, namely self-employment, activities such as selling items over the internet, those with second homes, and VAT.

And for anyone who hasn't quite got the message, HMRC's new Director-General of Enforcement and Compliance, Jennie Granger, has spelled it out said: "Our message is a simple one: the net is closing in. We will detect you if you haven't put a job through the books, if you haven't declared investment income, if you've hidden assets offshore or if you haven't registered for VAT. Please don't fool yourself that HMRC won't do anything - it is only a matter of time before we catch up with you."

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