CEO Chris Merry explains to Accountancy Age why the firm is backing away from complex tax products
RSM TENON has decided it no longer wants to be in the business of risky and complex tax products, but why has the firm suddenly decided to change direction?
The listed firm announced in its interim management report that, due to chancellor George Osborne’s recently introduced clampdown on general anti-avoidance rules (GAAR), it would no longer provide Specialist Tax Service lines and doesn’t expect any new revenue in this area.
The GAAR, which will be introduced following government consultation, intends to cut out abusive tax avoidance schemes and provide tax certainty.
Merry told Accountancy Age the firm was backing away from complex tax products because they were no longer profitable.
“The law has changed and it is no longer profitable so we are no longer offering any new products,” he said.
“Complex tax products will be difficult to find and if you did find them, they will be more risky. We don’t want to be part of a business offering risky products.
“There will always be some clever person coming up with clever ideas on tax products. But it is not the business for us.
“We don’t want to operate or invest in tax avoidance cases.”
He explained that complex tax products were no longer cost effective and that its specialist tax service line will maintain any tax products that are already in their lifecycle, but would not offer any more.
The unit will be maintained through a small team with the current products running from anything up to seven years.
Merry stressed that the firm would continue to offer tax advice and support and general tax services.