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Dave Beans

Taxman Targets 50,000 Plumbers

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Pay tax on all your cash in hand income, or we'll come after you...

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-13203122

The taxman is targeting plumbers and others who work for cash in a fresh campaign against those not paying tax. HM Revenue and Customs is writing to 50,000 tradespeople warning them to pay any tax they owe, or face big fines.

It is urging them to take advantage of a temporary amnesty which has been granted as part of an operation against tax avoidance and illegal tax evasion. Last year, the Revenue targeted doctors and other medical professionals and raised £9m from the campaign. This was paid by 1,500 professionals, although 30,000 were approached.

In the latest campaign, tradespeople will still be subject to fines of up to 20% of the tax owed. However, investigations made after the amnesty could result in 100% penalties and prosecution. According the government, £45bn is lost each year through unpaid taxes in the UK.

Edited by Dave Beans

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Makes sense in principle. But how likely is it to work in practice? I'd kind-of presume traceable tradespeople, like the ones who do jobs for a lettings agent, would be fully above-board already.

I guess you could try and incentivise compliance and probably get partial results. Encourage and even contribute to an industry body that indemnifies customers against cowboys ("he bodges it, we send someone else to fix it"), and have customers register each job to benefit from protection under such a scheme.

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Makes sense in principle. But how likely is it to work in practice? I'd kind-of presume traceable tradespeople, like the ones who do jobs for a lettings agent, would be fully above-board already.

I guess you could try and incentivise compliance and probably get partial results. Encourage and even contribute to an industry body that indemnifies customers against cowboys ("he bodges it, we send someone else to fix it"), and have customers register each job to benefit from protection under such a scheme.

A mate of mine registered as a GasSafe Plumber about a year ago...Apparently they have to log every job (as they are liable for any work done)...which means that each job is already traceable...

£9m for writing some moderately scary sounding letters aint a bad return, mind....

Edited by Dave Beans

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BTL Landlords, again a simple exercise as HMRC can search the Land Registry database by name using forms PN1 and CIT.

Edit to add

They could start the exercise by requesting the names of landlords using one of the tenant deposits schemes database, or request the names of landlords from lettings agents. If names appear more than once on the land registry database, there is a fair chance that they have a BTL. A quick cross reference against HMRC databases and it's fill yer boots time.

Edited by Mr. Miyagi

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A mate of mine registered as a GasSafe Plumber about a year ago...Apparently they have to log every job (as they are liable for any work done)...which means that each job is already traceable...

£9m for writing some moderately scary sounding letters aint a bad return, mind....

So a load of GPs/Surgeons are greedy, tax avoiding crooks - even though they get paid one of the largest salaries in NHS after qualifying (Drug company bribes, free gourmet dinners, country club golf weekends paid for, other 'holidays/trips etc)

Makes you wunder if same had their fingers 'X'ed when they declared their hypocrytical oath not to harm or poison their patients!

I wonder if the same percentage is mirrored amongst the supa-crooks in the City?

When Sugar does his finger(wand) pointing for "you're fired" - it's a Masonic sign!

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If the plumbers have been canny and not squirrellled away too much then it should be untraceable. End of the day there needs to be a paper trail to prove that income existed in the first place. Of course the annual accounts also need to be pretty much on par year on year otherwise a sudden drop will notice.

Not a plumber but I know another tradesman living close to me takes out about £15k a year and stores it in his safe, 2 reasons he doesn't have to declare it as income and it comes off his bottom line keeping it below the VAT registration level.

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Just as I suspected.

Public sector workers have to pay all their taxes whilst private sector fiddling is rife!

Public sector workers don't 'pay' any tax. They are handed someone else's taxes, then made to give a bit back.

I'm up for just paying public sector workers net, thus destroying this charade that they pay tax at all. Imagine the reduced workload on the revenue.

Won't happen, bureaucracy facilitates bureaucrats and their beloved empire building.

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Pay tax on all your cash in hand income, or we'll come after you...

Given the choice of paying a plumber, or any other person you deal with for that matter, £60 for goods or services, or £100 + £20 VAT on top, which would you go for?

The nub of the problem is that taxes are far too high. Tax is the price for a civilized society and most of us accept we have to pay some but when it gets to the ridiculously high levels we suffer today the temptation to reduce the amount you pay becomes irresistible.

Taxes used to be paid to the church, a tithe, but that was 10%. Taxes were usually extorted at higher rates when wars had to be funded, what's the excuse today?

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So a load of GPs/Surgeons are greedy, tax avoiding crooks - even though they get paid one of the largest salaries in NHS after qualifying (Drug company bribes, free gourmet dinners, country club golf weekends paid for, other 'holidays/trips etc)

Makes you wunder if same had their fingers 'X'ed when they declared their hypocrytical oath not to harm or poison their patients!

I wonder if the same percentage is mirrored amongst the supa-crooks in the City?

When Sugar does his finger(wand) pointing for "you're fired" - it's a Masonic sign!

I thought it was his ET impression

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Just as I suspected.

Public sector workers have to pay all their taxes whilst private sector fiddling is rife!

Well go and get a proper job in the private sector then, if you're that bothered and believe "you're worth it."

What's that? "No transferable skills that the private sector would want..." did I hear you say?

B

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If the demands of HMRC were reasonable then most plumbers pay up just for the piece of mind. But the gov't is too greedy and tradespeople aren't going to go to all that effort to work for themselves only to hand their income over to the taxman.

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If you think taxes are high now, wait until the government tries to close that >10% of GDP budget deficit at a time of real* economic contraction!

*Excluding GDP 'growth' caused by fiddled inflation numbers and increased government spending.

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...part of an operation against tax avoidance and illegal tax evasion. Last year, the Revenue targeted doctors and other medical professionals and raised £9m from the campaign. This was paid by 1,500 professionals, although 30,000 were approached.

See what's happening here? HMRC are using the terms avoidance and evasion together, the aim being to get in first and group any measures at not paying what they think is the right amount of tax as illegal evasion.

Using an ISA or putting money in a pension is a form of tax avoidance; no one is under any obligation to pay any more tax than the absolute minimum that the law stipulates. By including avoidance it gives them carte-blanche to make it up as they go along using their bully-boy tactics.

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See what's happening here? HMRC are using the terms avoidance and evasion together, the aim being to get in first and group any measures at not paying what they think is the right amount of tax as illegal evasion.

Using an ISA or putting money in a pension is a form of tax avoidance; no one is under any obligation to pay any more tax than the absolute minimum that the law stipulates. By including avoidance it gives them carte-blanche to make it up as they go along using their bully-boy tactics.

Indeed; and the public has been completely softened up on the topic to now cheer for anything which can be made to sound like "making people pay their share". Yesterday this included a Council charging people for taking a client for a training run through a park in London, and people were phoning in cheering it on.

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Heh I remember working for a small local accountants.

You would do the accounts for one company then a plumber... the plumber had worked for the first company but had issued a dummy invoice which was either a different colour or it was listed to a completely different plumber. You could see the hand writing (and spelling mistakes on them) was identical.

Plumbers would pretend to be other plumbers to get others into trouble.

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Hmm, plumbers?

How about hairdressers, bartenders & servers, burger vans, ice cream trucks, tramps, buskers...

It's all just noise, the only real easy targets are the landlords and sub £1,000,000 investors, which is pretty much everybody. Watch out! It's hard being a stationary target.

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Pedant

It is true though. This is an argument I've had many times with my sister (a teacher in France, but still applies to the UK).

Public sector workers are paid out of the government's till, then give back a bit (pretend tax) that is put back in the same till.

It is a gimmick, public sector workers do not pay tax, and even though my sister is a math teacher, she still doesn't get it...

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  • 312 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

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