New Team to Invistgate Wealthiest UK Taxpayers
October 31, 2011 Taxation in UK
LONDON – The UK HM Revenue and Customs has assembled a new team of investigators to catch the country’s wealthiest tax evaders.
In a statement released on October 31st the HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) announced that it has put together a new team of taxation experts in an effort to conduct an increasing number of investigations into tax evasion by the wealthiest British taxpayers.
The new tax investigations team is called the “Affluent Unit”, and will be primarily concerned with uncovering evidence of tax evasion committed by the country’s highest earners. Initially, the 200 member unit will use comprehensive data mining and cross checking techniques to inspect the tax returns of individuals who own property abroad.
The investigation will aim to uncover discrepancies between the value of the overseas property and the declared incomes of the taxpayer. The HMRC hopes to also discover evidence of individuals whose overseas properties provide rental incomes which are not being declared and taxed in the UK.
In the near future the Affluent Unit will also apply similar data mining and cross checking techniques to the investigation of the tax affairs of taxpayers with a net worth exceeding GBP 20 million. The HMRC’s new team will also investigate commodity traders operating in the UK, in the hopes of finding individuals who are making significant profits which are not being declared.
According to the HMRC’s estimates, the Affluent Unit will directly assist in investigations that will draw back an additional GBP 500 million in previously unpaid taxes.
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