In pursuing unpaid tax, HMRC has not clearly demonstrated that it is on the side of the majority of taxpayers who pay their taxes in full. Last year the Department collected less tax in real terms than it managed to collect in 2011-12. This was despite the stated ambition to crack down on tax avoidance. The tax gap as defined by HMRC did not shrink, but in 2011-12 grew to Ap35 billion. Furthermore, this figure does not include all the tax revenue lost. HMRC pursues tax owed by the smaller businesses but seems to lose its nerve when it comes to mounting prosecutions against multinational corporations. It predicted that it would collect Ap3.12 billion unpaid tax from UK holders of Swiss bank accounts and this figure was built into budget estimates, but in 2013-14 it has so far secured just Ap440 million. HMRC aims to make the UK more attractive to business but the incentives to international corporations may also enable them to avoid tax. HMRC needs to strike the right balance between support and enforcement. The implementation of the Real Time Information system has been encouraging overall though some small businesses are continuing to struggle. It is of concern that HMRC is planning from April 2014 to fine companies even though some face continuing challenges. The successful implementation of Universal Credit depends on RTI continuing to work properly but the system does not have full disaster recovery arrangements. System failures could have serious consequences for payments to individualsNick Lodge: We understand how many staff do this work and we understand the return they get from it in terms of losses ... We are looking at it within customer service debt and fraud and error, and we think it is a big opportunity for the future.
|Title||:||House of Commons - Committee of Public Accounts: HMRC Tax Collection: Annual Report & Accounts 2012-13 - HC 666|
|Author||:||Great Britain: Parliament: House of Commons: Committee of Public Accounts|
|Publisher||:||The Stationery Office - 2013-12-19|