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HMRC set for new powers to target tax scheme promoters

HMRC set for new powers to target tax scheme promoters

The government is set to launch a consultation to give HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) increased powers to target promoters of high-risk tax avoidance schemes.

Next year the government will consult on giving HMRC ‘a package of penalty and information powers’ specifically targeting promoters of schemes 'which have a negligible or low probability of providing the advertised tax advantage or involve or facilitate some element of concealment or misdescription'.

The government said measures being introduced in the financial services bill were not on their own sufficient to deter high-risk promoters from marketing such schemes.

It also plans to hand the taxman more information powers around the disclosure of tax avoidance schemes (Dotas).

The Finance Bill 2013 will contain regulation-making powers so that HMRC can require avoidance scheme members to pass over information to the promoters, and for the promoters in turn to give HMRC information when required about clients in the scheme.

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