Posted by Tax Innovations on 25 Nov 2011

HMRC Launches Offshore Tax Unit

HM revenue and customs (HMRC) has officially launched their new offshore tax unit targeting those with undeclared offshore income.

Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander announced in September that there would be an initial deployment of 100 offshore investigators tasked with identifying and pursuing those with undeclared offshore capital and income.

The Treasury Minister David Gauke said:

“The days when untaxed income or capital could be safely salted away offshore, beyond the reaches of the taxman, are long gone. The launch of this specialist unit, together with the other valuable work the department is driving forward in an effort to tackle offshore evasion, underlines the fact that offshore tax cheats are fast running out of places to hide.”

Official Launch of the Offshore Tax Unit

Although this is seen as the official launch of the offshore tax unit, foreign property owners have already been targeted by the HMRC affluent team, the section of the unit created to target overseas land and property owners.

As we stated then, it is hard to understand how HMRC intends to manage the process of identifying and prosecuting its target offenders.

Tax evasion can never be supported, but good tax planning is good tax planning and if a legal channel to a more efficient tax position exists then it will be utilised – onshore, offshore or even outer space!

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Contact us and we can help with our specialist offshore tax planning services.