Fleet chiefs face weeks of red tape

The Revenue needs the information to complete tax returns when the new rules come into force in April 2002, but tax specialists believe providing the data could give companies with big company car fleets ‘weeks’ of burdensome red tape.

Some estimates put the added workload at one person working full-time for six weeks. Alastair Kendrick, tax director with Ernst & Young, said: ‘This is too short-sighted. This detail should have been obtained from the outset.’

Employers will be asked to provide CO2 emissions of employees’ company cars. The request is voluntary but leaves employers with a dilemma. ‘If information is not provided, employees could end up with an over or underpayment of their tax,’ said Kendrick.

The Revenue this week confirmed it would send a mailshot at the end of June asking for emission details and said it already holds information on list prices, which are essential under the new rules for taxing company cars.

The problems arise for company cars registered before April 2001 and still in use after the new rules come into effect next year. For cars registered after that date the information is contained on the car registration document.

The Revenue has arranged for the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders to help with the supply of information electronically, but at a cost. ‘To assist large companies, the SMMT will provide bulk data for a modest fee,’ it said in a statement.


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