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View the article online at http://citywire.co.uk/wealth-manager/article/a741634

Withers: Upfront tax payments could prove a human rights issue

by Elsa Buchanan on Mar 19, 2014 at 15:56

'I only imagine that it will ultimately give a cashflow advantage to HMRC, and a significant disadvantage to any taxpayer who has this demand issued upon them, and it seems to me unfair.

'This raises the issue of being consistent with human rights legislation, because what HMRC seems to be proposing is that they will demand payments of tax upfront, when they’ve looked at a similar scheme done by another taxpayer  that’s been defeated,' she told Wealth Manager

'There is a huge question mark over the amount that may need to pay, or the amount of tax that may or may not be endured. The huge issue is that the taxpayers may well need to take advice from an accountant or lawyer to enquire about what they should be doing, but they can’t all afford that.'

'It clearly discourages anyone from really fighting the point because they don’t all have enough money to fight it.'

The move could provide HMRC with additional tools to address a ‘legacy stock of an estimated 65,000 avoidance cases’. 

The Revenue will only be able to issue an accelerated payment notice where they have first sent the taxpayer an enquiry notice or issued them with a notice of assessment.

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