Is the government’s £15m figure for the cost of the trusts clampdown entirely kosher?
TS only asks because Mike Warburton, of Grant Thornton, told us a story about how, when the IR35 row was raging a few years ago, he wrote an article ‘for a joke’, saying that nannies could get around the rules by exploiting a loophole.The wheels of government duly moved into action. ‘We’ll move to clamp down on any of those who do not pay their fair share,’ the press release no doubt said. Whether or not they were nannies or aggressive tax avoiders, or both, that is.
And how much revenue did the fearsome measure raise? £15m, of course. No-one was using the ‘scheme’, such as it was, and according to Mike nobody planned to, but it would raise £15m.
HMRC will have to forgive TS a measure of cynicism, but does the government just say £15m every time it doesn’t really know what it’s doing with a measure?
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