The court ruled that so-called jack-up rigs – which are towed into position and then raised on legs from the seabed – should be categorised as ships. As many as 20,000 oil rig workers can now claim they are ‘seafarers’ for tax purposes, meaning they are now entitled to 100% tax rebates, according to a report in the Times.
In the 1970s, the Callaghan government introduced the lucrative concessions in an effort to boost the number of merchant seaman working in North Sea oil exploration. But Mr Justice Carnwarth found the word ‘ship’ was not defined in the tax legislation of the time.
The ruling, however, only applies to tax claims before 1998 when the law on the concession was changed.
Report argues that the government must change the way it makes tax and budget decisions
Drastically fewer offices for HMRC in the hope to reduce their running costs
Tayabali Tomlin and d&t directors launch £20 a month TaxGo service, aiming to be the 'biggest UK firm' by client numbers
Companies must report on their complex financial structures including offshore accounts and notify HMRC