Taking Stock – How Finance Bill can make you ill.

Those of you who bothered to obtain a copy of the gargantuan Finance Bill – TS sympathises if you couldn’t face it – will have noticed this droll opening on the front page. ‘Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer has made the following statement under section 19(1)(a) of the Human Rights Act 1998: In my view the provisions of the Finance Bill are compatible with the Convention rights.’ But John Whiting, tax partner at PwC, is not convinced however by the chancellor’s earnest declaration. When asked his opinion of the Bill, Whiting spat: ‘Human rights? What about the human rights of the poor tax partner who has to read all this?’ Given the Bill ran to a back-breaking 850 pages you may find some sympathy for the poor man. It’s a miracle the beleaguered tax expert could lift it. Tax may be a weighty subject but you don’t want it to give you a hernia.

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