HM Revenue & Customs has written to the chairmen of the top 500 companies
in an attempt to establish a dialogue over tax risk.
The letters, copies of which have been seen by Accountancy Age, invite senior
figures on boards to respond to a questionnaire on tax issues: ‘There is a
growing voice among large investors and accounting/tax professionals that
discussion with Heads of tax and at Board level is an appropriate way of
managing tax issues and, in particular, tax risk,’ the letter reads.
The questionnaire itself asks specific questions about sharing compliance
documents with HMRC, about the reporting of tax in the accounts (echoing calls
for a ‘total tax contribution framework’ figure to appear in UK accounting
documents), about the location of the company’s parent and how that affects tax
strategies, and more general questions about how to facilitate dialogue with
The move to communicate with chairmen is part of HMRC’s ‘Tax on the Boardroom
Agenda’ programme, an attempt to emphasise tax risk to large companies.
The letter will almost certainly be seen, however, as a move to clamp down on
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