HMRC Launches Tax Investigations of Trades People

Published on March 4, 2011 by Crawfords Accounting

The HRMC investigation programme continues but this time it is plumbers, gas fitters and heating engineers who are being put under the microscope. The HMRC are demanding that trades people declare their earnings and any unpaid tax. By admitting to not having paid any required tax, they will only be obliged to pay a 10% penalty of the unpaid tax.

The tax investigations began by targeting doctors and dentists; a minority of who were suspected of not declaring their full earnings for extra work. Those who accept the offer of the low penalty are required to contact the HMRC by 31st May. Under the terms of PTSP, they will be required to pay any unpaid tax, accumulated interest and the stated penalty. By coming forward before the deadline, these workers will only have their records from the last five years scrutinised. Usually it would go back as far as the last 20 years. Those who are investigated and found to have undeclared earnings after the deadline could be fined as much as 100% of their unpaid tax.

Trades people are being targeted as it is estimated that 200,000 registered plumbers and gas fitters were guilty of being paid cash in hand and avoiding tax.

Mike Wells of the HMRS has said, “We will be using various intelligence sources to target plumbers who have not declared their full income. I strongly urge any in this group who think they may owe tax on their income to get in touch with HMRC and get their tax affairs in order simply and on the best available terms.”

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