Tag Archives: dodgers

Tax dodgers named on HMRC list

21 February 2013 Last updated at 17:12 GMT Treasury Minister David Gauke says the move is aimed at deterring would-be tax evaders

Tax dodgers are being named on a list published by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) for the first time, as their affairs come under greater scrutiny.

The list highlights “deliberate defaulters” who were found during investigations by HMRC into affairs conducted after April 2010.

In these cases, the culprits had each not paid more than £25,000 of tax.

The naming and shaming exercise is part of a crackdown that includes larger fines and tracing previous evaders.

The first list features nine names, including a hairdresser, a coach operator and a knitwear manufacturer.

They received fines ranging from a few thousand pounds to £291,830. This was imposed on wine retailer The Trade Beverage Company Ltd of Mobberley in Cheshire.

Other businesses named were bar and club Southport Leisure, of Coronation Walk, Southport, Gatemain Contractors, of Wainscott in Rochester, Kent, and Menemis, trading as Unlimited Knits in Nottingham.

Individuals named were hairdresser Joseph Tyrrell, of Prescot Road in Liverpool, grocer Rafique Maroof Raja, of Thornton, Kirkcaldy, pipework specialist S Stewart, of Woolton in Liverpool, David Alan Jay, who trades in property maintenance in Cranham, Essex, and coach operator Brian Clifford Tattersall, of Bolton.

“The publication of these names sends a clear signal that cheating on tax is wrong and reassures people who pay their taxes – the vast majority – that there are consequences for those who refuse to tell HMRC about their full liability,” said Treasury Minister David Gauke.

“It also encourages defaulters to make a full and prompt disclosure and cooperate with HMRC to avoid being named.”

When added together, the tax owed amounted to less than £1m.

When asked why no large corporations appeared on the list, Mr Gauke said that HMRC was taking action to close legal loopholes, and those who promoted aggressive tax avoidance schemes were also being exposed.

A recent Commons public accounts committee report called for HMRC to publicly list promoters of tax avoidance schemes and those who used them.

Crackdown

Under the new plan, called the Managing Deliberate Defaulters (MDD) scheme, anyone who evades tax will also have their financial affairs watched closely for up to five years to make sure they do not re-offend.

Tax form The crackdown was aimed at deterring would-be tax evaders

It started with letters being sent to 900 known tax dodgers warning them they will stay in the Revenue’s sights for up to the next five years.

HMRC has said the programme was as much about deterring would-be tax evaders as punishing those who had already been found out.

Other measures include:

making announced or surprise inspections of books and recordsasking for additional information or documents to be sent in with the person’s tax returns carrying out in-depth compliance checks into all or any part of the person’s tax affairsobserving and recording the person’s business activities and cross-checking details in their accounts requiring more frequent VAT returns or cancelling certain favourable VAT schemes for miscreants.

Ordinarily, tax offenders can be fined up to 100% of the tax they have not paid, plus the payment of the back taxes plus interest.

Offenders who have been trying to evade tax in some offshore jurisdictions now face fines of up to 200% of their unpaid tax.

HMRC has the option of prosecuting the worst offenders, which can lead to them being sent to jail if convicted.

The list will be updated every three months.

In order for someone to be named on the website, they must have failed to fully disclose what they owed at the outset.

The taxman can only publish defaulters’ names for a year and within 12 months of the penalty becoming final. Details are published only once all appeal routes have been exhausted.

Chas Roy-Chowdhury, of the ACCA tax body, said this made the list “credible”.

Young cheats: Almost 50% of tax dodgers below 35 years of age

FBR, NADRA catego­rise over 2.4m dodger­s accord­ing to age groups, sex and profes­sion.  The statistics shows that almost two-thirds of the identified people use advanced business models.

ISLAMABAD: 

Nearly five out of every 10 identified tax dodgers are between 18 and 35 years of age, while one out of every 10 of the evaders is a woman, according to official statistics.


Karachi hosts the maximum number of tax evaders, while traders make up the biggest group of those who earn millions, own multiple houses and expensive vehicles, maintain many accounts and spend significant time abroad while avoiding paying a rupee to the exchequer.


The statistics also show that almost two-thirds of the identified people use advanced business models.


The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) and the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) have for the first time identified and grouped over 2.4 million tax dodgers, according to their age groups, sex, geographical background and professions.


Almost 60% of the 2.4 million have a two-member family, while 317,429 have more than five-member families. According to census and data, wealthy people like to have small families.


Also featuring in the list of evaders are 735,212 people who have remained taxpayers but have exited the system through corrupt FBR officials. However, this figure has not been used in working out the percentages in various categories of evaders.  Salaried individuals and withholding agents have not been added to the list either.


According to official figures, as many as 2.2 million or almost 90% of the 2.4 million men and 240,292 (10.2%) women willfully evade taxes.


The government will provide the tax dodgers one last opportunity to avail the tax amnesty scheme before resorting to coercive measures.


Age groups


Ten percent or 242,640 indentified people are between 18 to 25 years of age; 465,549 or 20% are between 26 to 30 years of age and 393,850 people or 17% are between 31 and 35 years of age. This shows that 47% of the total evaders fall between the ages of 18 and 35, indicating the trend of transferring assets to offspring, a common practice among politicians and the industrialists in the country.


As many as 897,242 individuals or 38% are between the age group of 36 and 50 years. Fifteen per cent or 355,744 people fall in the age group of 36 to 40, while 285,409 or 12% are of 41 to 45 years of age. Eleven percent or 256,089 individuals are aged between 46 and 50 years.


In the elderly group of 51 to 60 years, as many as 360,546 people or 15% have been identified.


Top 10 cities


Karachi hosts 326,144 or 13.8% of the identified people followed by Lahore with 238,050 people (10%), Rawalpindi with 117,639 people (5%), Faisalabad with 101,422 people (4.3%) and Sialkot with 97,391 people or 4.2%.


The rest are residents of Gujranwala, Gujrat, Multan, Peshawar and Islamabad.


Top 10 professions


The maximum numbers of evaders, 62,779, are traders by profession, followed by contractors (36,270), importers-exporters (17,853), general-store wholesalers (13,531), jewellers (10,728), small industry owners (10,105), construction industry owners (9,569), doctors (9,330), travel agents (5,426) and owners of filling stations (3,766.)


Published in The Express Tribune, November 13th, 2012.

Tax dodgers risk cancellation of NICs, passports as revenue collectors look to tighten screws

Federa­l Board of Revenu­e submit­s scheme­s to financ­e minist­ry for approv­al. Federal Board of Revenue submits schemes to finance ministry for approval. DESIGN: ESSA MALIK

ISLAMABAD: It’s the newest amnesty deal for delinquent taxpayers and non-taxpayers.

In its latest effort to broaden the tax base, the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has submitted two tax amnesty schemes to the finance ministry for approval.

However, there is a catch this time for non-participants: those who fail to avail this opportunity of obtaining clean slates and joining the tax net,  face the risk of their National Identity Cards (NICs) and passports getting invalidated and their bank accounts being frozen.

Briefing the Senate Standing Committee on Finance, chaired by Senator Nasreen Jalil, FBR Senior Member Inland Revenue Service Asrar Rauf said delinquent taxpayers would be able to benefit from these two schemes by December 31 this year, if the finance ministry approved them.

“If the people do not avail these schemes, they may face cancellation of their National Identity Cards (NICs) and passports, and their bank accounts may be frozen,” Rauf said, adding that their names would also be placed on the defaulters’ list.

The FBR scheme, which is being put forward as an opportunity to encourage non-taxpayers to pay their due tax, is expected to bring a huge number of people into the tax net with the expected revenue estimated at Rs196 billion.

Furthermore, Rauf informed the committee that tax authorities had already identified 1.78 million families across the country involved in frequent foreign travels, spending huge amounts on their utilities and other functions. He said the amnesty schemes would allow such families to legalise their hidden assets after paying Rs40,000 and registering as taxpayers.

Oil price revisions

FBR officials also claimed that weekly oil price revisions had resulted in loss of revenue to the national exchequer.

“The government has lost revenue worth Rs7 billion due to the weekly review of oil prices,” an FBR official told the committee members who strongly opposed the weekly price revision of oil products, and recommended switching back to setting prices on a monthly basis.

Diamer-Bhasha dam

Meanwhile, the Economic Affairs Division (EAD) officials informed the parliamentary committee that it had failed to arrange financing for the $12 billion Diamer-Bhasha dam.

“The World Bank says that investment for Diamer-Bhasha dam is at risk due to the government of Pakistan’s failure to arrange funds for the dam,” an EAD official said.

However, officials said the US had committed approximately $220 million for the dam, adding that even though the Asian Development Bank (ADB) had never pledged any money for the project, there are estimates that ADB may extend a loan of $3 to 4 billion, if it approved funding for the project.

PR, NTDC loans

Meanwhile, top EAD officials also revealed that Pakistan Railways (PR) and National Transmission Dispatch Company (NTDC) had bypassed EAD and violated the rules of business by signing loan agreements with China amounting to $817.60 million for four projects.

The parliamentary panel sought a detailed briefing from PR, NTDC and the Planning Commission to decide if the case would be referred to the National Accountability Bureau.

Published in The Express Tribune, October 4th, 2012.