The MPs have eventually replied on a common question linked with the 2019’s most controversial reform—the Loan Charge.
A few months ago, HMRC dodged this question when they were asked if they had been engaging those contractors who have been using disguised remuneration schemes. The panel formed of these MPs has reportedly informed that it actually did.
According to the Sunday Telegraph, this information did not come from the Revenue. Instead it came straight from the horse’s mouth—contractors who formerly used to work in the HMRC where they used these schemes.
The former Revenue’s contractors who are currently representing about 50,000 workers have revealed that HMRC imposed penalties on them for the use of remuneration schemes.
An anonymous contractor—who did not exactly divulge the specifics of the engagement with HMRC—unveiled that they were now left with a £140,000 liability.
The news about HMRC striking its own over the loan charge—the same was done in the case of the IR35 and the notorious off-payroll rules in 2017—has given rise to an assessment that HMRC stands to gain about £800m from the affected workers.
The estimate was provided by a spokesman from the Revenue to the Financial Times. This means that as the loan charge is expected to generate about £3.2bn, about 75 percent of the total amount is going to be taken from the employers.
A popular news piece attracted criticism from the LCAG as they pinned the blame on the taxman for “deliberately misleading statement[s] to journalists”.
The piece was originally published in the Guardian and contained a statement from an HMRC spokesperson. The official revealed that since the 1st of April 2016—when the fraud investigation service was founded by the HMRC—there have been several individuals (more than 15) who received convictions for offences associated with such arrangements. These arrangements were advertised as schemes for tax avoidance. As a result, their sentences have gone as far as 95 years custodial.
The LCAG replied that the latest findings indicated that there was no case among them which related to promoters advertising arrangements (that were based on loans). Therefore, they believe that HMRC intentionally misguided journalists.
The lobbyist group is currently contacting people who have been a victim of the charge for a London-based meeting on 13th March 2019. They believe that HMRC was attempting to rationalise its attacking behaviour to make up for its previous non-action.