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HMRC set for another offshore amnesty

HM Revenue & Customs is to introduce a second offshore tax amnesty for people with offshore accounts.

It says that plans are still being finalised but are likely to unveiled before the end of the year.

But Grant Thornton tax investigations director Gary Ashford says another amnesty is unlikely to generate much revenue for the Treasury, as the first has not been as successful as HMRC expected. He believes it is likely that the Government will see a late influx of payments under the first amnesty before the November 26 deadline.

But he says that HMRC will still be disappointed with the amount of revenue .

The first amnesty offered an opportunity to disclose money in accounts that have not been included in tax returns in return for the reduction of the penalty on top of tax owed from 30 per cent to 10 per cent.

Ashford says: “It was initially thought that billions of pounds could be recovered. It is now likely to be more like millions that will surface. It may even be a case of HMRC having overestimated how many people hold undisclosed offshore accounts. HMRC is determined to make examples of tax dodgers but will be looking to encourage them to disclose as they did with the offshore disclosure initiative.”

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