View more on these topics

Banks warn Osborne on HMRC tax grab powers

Banks have warned Chancellor George Osborne that HM Revenue & Customs is not competent enough to be trusted with the power to seize unpaid tax directly from people’s bank accounts.

British Bankers’ Association chief executive Anthony Browne has written to the Chancellor saying the plans are not proportionate and risk falling foul of human rights laws.

In the letter, Browne says: “HMRC’s performance cannot yet be considered sufficiently competent to wield an unchecked power this strong, at least not without significant reputational damage and potential litigation. HMRC would effectively be a judge in its own cause.”

The Government set out plans in the Budget for HMRC to have the power to recover unpaid tax directly from debtors’ bank accounts where they owe more than £1,000 and have previously been contacted about paying the tax. 

In using this power, HMRC would ensure debtors were left with at least £5,000 in their account.

The BBA says the threshold of £1,000 is too low and could put many vulnerable taxpayers at risk.

The organisation is also calling for greater independent oversight of the power, claiming HMRC’s systems and processes for avoiding mistakes are insufficiently robust.

Newsletter

News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up

Comments

    Leave a comment

    Close

    Why register with Money Marketing ?

    Providing trusted insight for professional advisers.  Since 1985 Money Marketing has helped promote and analyse the financial adviser community in the UK and continues to be the trusted industry brand for independent insight and advice.

    News & analysis delivered directly to your inbox
    Register today to receive our range of news alerts including daily and weekly briefings

    Money Marketing Events
    Be the first to hear about our industry leading conferences, awards, roundtables and more.

    Research and insight
    Take part in and see the results of Money Marketing's flagship investigations into industry trends.

    Have your say
    Only registered users can post comments. As the voice of the adviser community, our content generates robust debate. Sign up today and make your voice heard.

    Register now

    Having problems?

    Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3712

    Lines are open Monday to Friday 9:00am -5.00pm

    Email: customerservices@moneymarketing.com