Inland Revenue/CA merger may delay social security bill

Concern over the powers of a merged Inland Revenue and Contributions Agency may delay the social security bill.

The profession?s enthusiasm for the plans gave way this week to concern over the powers of a newly merged authority.

Peter Howarth, tax investigations expert at Latham Crossley & Davis, spoke out against the merger. He was concerned the CA?s power to enter any premises without a warrant and interview anyone found there would be passed to the Revenue ?by default?.

John Willmott, managing director of Chiltern Group?s tax services, said: ?You would assume the procedures for investigation would take the tougher organisation?s line.?

A Revenue spokesman said there was no decision yet on the powers which would be given to the newly merged operation.

But one insider suggested these concerns, as well as confusion over the appeals procedure, could cause delays to the bill which was supposed to gain royal assent in April.

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