Beware the Taxman is coming and he means business!

Recruitment Agents Beware

In the recent past HM Revenue and Customs brought only a small number of criminal prosecutions for tax evasion and these were normally where there was either a high degree of public interest or very large sums of tax evaded. The Treasury promised in 2010 to change this approach and we are now beginning to see the evidence that there is a seismic shift in HMRC’s attitude to criminal prosecutions. In 2011/12 there were 302 cases brought, this has doubled to 617 in 2012/13 and HMRC aim to at least double this number again and have been given a substantial budget to achieve this. The prosecutions are not necessarily where people owe vast sums of tax and have involved “ordinary” individuals who have not declared much lower amounts of tax than has been seen previously. Whilst HMRC are successful in 90% of the tax fraud cases it brings, the costs involved often exceed the amount of tax evaded but they see it as a method of getting the message out that they mean business in the expectation that this will reduce tax evasion in the future.