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HMRC justified in ‘name and shame’ scheme, say readers

THE TAXMAN is right to name and shame tax evaders who have kept £25,000 or more from the public purse, according to Accountancy Age readers.

Of the 100 polled, 79 said the tactic was reasonable and would act as an effective weapon in the department’s arsenal against tax dodging.

The remaining 21 felt the measure was unfair and could cause extensive reputational damage.

Under the initiative, tax dodgers could be named and shamed in local and regional media, thanks to an initiative administered by HM Revenue & Customs.

While the scheme to publish details of deliberate defaulters has not been utilised since it was brought in on 3 March 2010, names of those not paying their share – individuals, companies, partnerships and trusts – can be expected to appear in the media next year.

In order for a tax dodger to be named and shamed, a lengthy list of criteria must be satisfied. HMRC may release names if, after undergoing a compliance check, they are penalised for deliberate inaccuracies, failures and/or wrongdoings amounting to more than £25,000 since April 2010.

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