HMRC targets security and construction industries

HMRC have recently publicly announced a number of fresh initiatives aimed at tackling tax evasion, to be carried out by specialist teams which, adopting a militaristic style, HMRC are calling ‘the next wave of taskforces’.

They will focus on selected perceived high risk trades including the security and construction industries.  This scare tactic approach is emphasised further by comments made by the HMRC’s Director General of Enforcement and Compliance, Jennie Granger: “If you have declared all your income you have nothing to worry about. But if you haven’t, we will find you…” – move over Liam Neeson.

The initiatives are underpinned by an agreement with the Security Industry Authority which HMRC say will strengthen the exchange of information between the two organisations.

The taskforce will be looking closely at security guards, bouncers and their employers in the South East and London and is estimated to yield HMRC somewhere in the region of £10 million. How they have arrived at this figure is not entirely clear though there is reference to an increased risk of fraudulent VAT repayment claims being submitted by the private security industry.  Whilst this gives the impression that the investigations will primarily concern VAT the door is left ajar for the review to be extended to other areas.

Another old favourite for special attention is the construction industry, with a taskforce in London aiming to top up the Treasury coffers to the tune of £3 million. There is no indication of the risk base used to arrive at this figure though we envisage the focus will be on the operation of the Construction Industry Scheme (CIS) which HMRC have been policing rather enthusiastically of late, and VAT.

For the full announcement click here

Published: 10.14.13 - Posted In: Latest News