HMRC can enquire into any individual or company transaction or return. It can be a very stressful time especially as their enquiry window and penalties depend on the action of the tax payer. These can range from 2 years where an individual has been open and honest about their transactions but may have made a mistake, to 20 years where an individual has deliberately attempted to hide or amend information.
There are two parts to this issue. Firstly, avoiding the high risk tax planning that HMRC clearly challenge. Making sure that whatever you do decide to do is carefully planned, commercially appropriate and well documented. If HMRC do come knocking, you should be ready to answer any questions immediately, because they have been thought about in advance and documentation prepared just in case.
If you do find yourself under HMRC scrutiny, we will work with you to gather all of the facts to deal with the enquiry correctly to support you through the process. That can occasionally mean telling them they have no right to ask some questions, or providing information in a controlled way to avoid further issues arising. Understanding HMRC’s attitude to certain tax issues, and the powers they do and don’t have, will enable us to manage the investigation to get the minimum tax assessed possible.
Our role is to protect you and take away as much of the worry as we can. We can provide some peace of mind with a Fee Protection Insurance policy that covers our fees in the event of a range of enquiries and investigations. This provides us with a budget to work hard on your behalf without it costing you.