STRICTLY COME DANCING co-host Tess Daly and her TV presenter husband Vernon Kay have been caught up in a tax avoidance inquiry after they invested in a £14m film partnership.
Tax breaks have been put in place to encourage investment in the British film industry, and while they have stimulated UK productions, they have also given rise to a series of tax avoidance schemes, many of which have been shut down by HM Revenue & Customs.
Daly and Kay are among 50 investors who could face tax bills and possible penalties if their Beaumont partnership suffers the same fate, the Daily Mail reports.
The scheme operated on a sale and lease-back basis, it is understood, which involves the purchase of film rights for an inflated figure before selling the rights back at discounted rate, claiming the difference as a trading loss. Typically, the crux of the issue centres on whether that trade is deemed to be genuine.
Former accountant John Dryburgh is among those managing the partnership. Although he has no involvement in recruiting investors into the Beaumont scheme and could not say which films had been financed by the partnership, he told the Mail that an HMRC probe into the scheme was underway.
“It’s all been agreed with HMRC, as far as I know, and I’m confident it will be closed off once they’ve decided what to do about other cases,” he said.
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