According to the LITRG, a body of the Chartered Institute of Taxation, students in the UK pay too much tax, while the elderly faced the ‘nightmare of tax self-assessment’.
John Andrews, chairman of the LITRG said students and pensioners were a ‘neglected group of taxpayers’ who were overpaying tax ‘largely because of ignorance of the system’, and should be given ‘special recognition within the tax system’.
According to the report, Students – The case for making life easier, there was very little information available to students about important issues like tax exemptions for bursary awards, or about the tax advantages available to overseas students.
The report found tax processes designed for students were outdated and did not reflect the current needs of students.
The LITRG called on the Revenue to urgently revise these processes as well as provide students with a specially designed information pack and a separate website. Employees should also be made aware of procedures for employing students.
In an effort to make things easier for the elderly, the LITRG recommended the Department of Social Security and Inland Revenue should team up on key processes, and pressed the Revenue to appoint a ‘official pensioners champion’ to place the needs of pensioners above administrative procedures.
The Revenue should remove thousands of pensioners from the its system under a goodwill agreement and said insurance companies should operate a more simplified PAYE tax on all annuity income, the LITRG suggested.
All suggestions are currently under review by the government.
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