IRS Sets Sights on High Wealth Individuals

October 28, 2009 Offshore BankingOffshore TaxationTaxation in USA  No comments

Dough Shulman, US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Commissioner, has revealed that the department has initiated a new audit program aimed at catching high-wealth tax cheats.

Speaking at a conference for the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) on the 26th of October, in Washington DC, Doug Shulman announced the creation of the Global High Wealth Industry Group (GHWIG). According to the IRS Commissioner, the unit will conduct “a small number” of audits on individuals with assets “in the neighborhood of $30 million”, with the primary aim of weeding out tax cheats who hide behind complex financial structures.

While claimed to be operational for a number of months, the new unit is expected to begin its initial audits in November...

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Slew of Green Taxes Recommended for UK

October 27, 2009 Taxation in UK  No comments

The Green Fiscal Commission (GFC) is recommending that the UK government instates a number of new “green“ taxes.

In a report released on October 26th, the GFC recommended that the UK government implements a set of new tax measures aimed at reducing carbon emissions and creating new jobs. The report is the conclusion of a two-year study, which examined similar attempts across Europe.

The GFC is recommending a total of £150 billion in new taxes. The list of ideas includes a £300 rise in levies on new vehicle purchases. The tax will increase by an extra £300 per year, for the next ten years. Under the GFC recommendations, fuel duties would be tripled over the space of three years. Increases in taxes on household energy were also mooted.

The GFC has stated that the increases should be a...

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New Zealand Set to Put Pressure on Evasion

October 26, 2009 Taxation in New Zealand  No comments

The New Zealand Inland Revenue Department (IRD) and Government figures have given clear indication that the country will see increased pressure on tax evaders in 2010.

According to a submission from the IRD to the government supported Tax Working Group, released October 25th, the government is losing approximately NZ$300 million in taxation receipts annually through money hidden in trust accounts. The total tax evasion amount is only increased when companies created purely for the purpose of tax avoidance are considered. Statements by Bill English, New Zealand Finance Minister, have supported this, with claims being made by him that the government will take action in 2010 to close loopholes on those that it considers to be “tax dodgers”.

Further, the IRD report stated that since the in...

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UK Pensioners Overpaying Taxes

October 23, 2009 Taxation in UK  No comments

Figures have shown that millions of United Kingdom’s elderly are over-paying on their taxes.

In a report published on October 22nd, the National Audit Office (NAO) released figures indicating that the UK is seeing gross-overpayment of tax by pensioners. According to the NAO, overpayments by the elderly have an especially exasperating economic effect as the income of the average pensioner is approximately 25% less than that of the rest of the population, sitting at £16,000.

The NAO report claimed that due to processing errors and discrepancies between pension providers and HM Revenue & Customs records, an estimated 1.5 million pensioners have over paid their taxes by an average £171 each, or a total of £250 million...

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Tories Vow to Cut Broadband Tax

October 22, 2009 Taxation in UK  No comments

The UK Conservative Party has promised to cut the current Government’s proposed £6 annual tax on fixed landlines, if they were to be elected in 2010.

Already using taxation as a fighting point for its election campaign, the UK Conservative Party is extending a promise to cut the proposed 50 pence a month levy on all of the UK’s landlines. The tax, which has come to be dubbed the “broadband tax”, has not yet been instated, but stands as a key point to the “Digital Britain” white paper, published on the 16th of June.

On October 19th, Jeremy Hunt, Shadow Culture Secretary, stated that if the UK Conservative Party were to see success in the upcoming May election, the tax would be cut “as soon as possible”. Alternatives to the tax were not proposed at the time.

The “broadband t...

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