HMRC has announced the latest of their task force crackdowns targeting specific trades, this time focusing their attention on the fast food industry. Other task forces so far this year have been clamping down on restaurants, plumbers and handymen with the intention of uncovering the tax evasion that is commonplace in many of these industries.
These task forces are only the beginning of a widespread tax crackdown that began in May, with nine more set to follow this year and then continue throughout 2012/13. The new task forces come as a result of 2010’s Government Spending Review, which will see £900 million spent on task forces with an expected yield of £7 billion recovered from tax evaders by 2014/15.
Even if your industry has not yet been targeted, there is a good chance that if you are a business owner then your sector will come under scrutiny at some point during the next two years. It is advisable for you to get your tax affairs in order now to avoid an intrusive inspection at a later date.
The taxman has also recently announced a campaign to encourage businesses that should be registered for VAT to come forward and put the record straight. Those who do come forward voluntarily to work with HMRC will receive a penalty fee reduction of up to 10%. This also applies for businesses that should have been registered for VAT in the past because they exceeded the £73,000 turnover threshold at some point.
This is a limited time amnesty offer from HMRC and will only run for three months from 5th July until 30th September 2011. They will then start working to identify businesses that should have registered and start to investigate them fully, a process that could ultimately result in criminal prosecution.
If you are worried about what effect these campaigns could have on your business, get in touch with the tax experts at Yorkshire Accountancy to discuss your options.