Tax plea for Britons fleeing Iraq

Link: Bosses called to war could lose tax perks

With the threat of war growing closer every day, the government advised all British citizens to leave the region.

But by leaving before the 5 April 2003 – for those citizens who originally left the UK after 6 April 2001 – they will not meet the one year tax test and will then face retrospective tax liability dating back to their original departure date, the IGM said.

If they would have fulfilled this one-year obligation they would have been treated by the Inland Revenue as a non-resident for tax purposes.

In a letter written to the chancellor, Brian Friedman, partner at Ernst & Young and president of the IGM asked for ‘an early announcement to give relief from unexpected and unforeseen tax bills for British expatriates who are now repatriated, pursuant to the advice given by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in relation to the Iraq crisis’.

Friedman said concessions should be subject to two limitations: the person must have been planning on staying long enough to remain non-resident and their should be some kind of geographical restrictions.

According to the FT the Treasury is willing to consider such concessions.

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