Arctic Systems ‘relaxed’ about challenge

Arctic Systems, the company at the centre of the landmark tax case over
husband-and-wife companies, says it is ‘relaxed’ about HM Revenue &
Customs’ bid to appeal the case to the Lords.

HMRC said late on Friday it planned to petition to appeal the Court of Appeal
judgment in the case. Although it was refused leave to appeal to the Lords, it
can appeal that judgment itself.

‘We are feeling very relaxed about things,’ Geoff Jones told today.

‘As far as we are concerned it is done and dusted. We don’t feel that going
to the Lords will make one iota of difference [to the judgment].’

Jones said he was ‘amazed’ that HMRC wanted to take the case further.

The Revenue’s decision was greeted with disappointed resignation by tax
advisers last week, who think the Revenue should let the matter drop, but
understand that having gone this far it would have felt compelled to have done
so. The Court of Appeal judgment in favour of the Joneses also surprised some

But Jones said the Court of Appeal case had felt much more positive than the
High Court hearing, which HMRC won: ‘Everyone felt whatever came out it would be
a decision on the issues and we would have a clear result.’

The High Court hearing had not encompassed so many of the issues, said Jones.

He also confirmed to Accountancy Age that the Professional
Contractors Group would be funding the appeal, since HMRC insists that it is not
a test case and will not put up the cash: ‘We are going to go through to the end
with this one. If they think they are going to scare us off with money it’s not
going to happen.’

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