In the latest HMRC press it was announced that the next round of trades and professions to be targeted by its task forces would be:
The legal profession in London
Grocery and retail in South and North Wales, the North West and the South West
Hair and beauty in the North East
Restaurants in the South East and Solent
The motor trade in Scotland
It is HMRC’s stated intent to recover more than £19.5 million and the above are being targeted in recovery of unpaid taxes.
Taskforces are specialist teams who undertake intensive investigations into the activity of specific high risk trade sectors and locations in the UK. These teams visit traders to examine their records and carry out investigations, generally focusing on groups of up to around 300 taxpayers at any one time.
David Gauke, the Exchequer Secretary when announcing the latest group of task said:
“We have made it clear that we will not tolerate tax evasion and we are determined to crack down on the minority who choose to break the rules. Everyone needs to pay the taxes they owe in full. It is not fair that at a time when most hard-working people are paying the right tax, others are trying to get out of paying what they should.”
HMRC’s Mike Eland, Director General Enforcement and Compliance, said in a separately issued statement of the task forces role :
“This is not an empty threat – HMRC can and will track you down if you choose to break the rules. We are on target to collect more than £50 million as a result of taskforces launched in 2011-12.”
HMRC has launched 30 taskforces since May 2011.
Taskforces came about as part of the Government’s £917 million spending review investment to tackle tax evasion, avoidance and fraud from 2011-12, the aim of which is to raise an additional £7 billion each year by 2014-15.