Financial Consultants have welcomed news that HMRC have brought forward proposals to help reduce the amount of unpaid tax.
The current figures is £46 billion which is mainly due from small businesses. In the past HMRC would have sent in the bailiffs but many online businesses don’t have any assets for a bailiff to seize. So HMRC are trying to become more creative. Their proposals include introducing new powers to:
- Seize money from digital and crypto wallets held by companies
- Be able to seize assets held at other companies’ warehouses.
- Tackle leasing assets
- Take tax bonds from companies who are regular no payers.
All these measures make sense. Financial Consultants have long argued that it’s not fair for companies to get away with not paying tax when ordinary workers’ pay their tax art source from salaries.
Having said that, over 5,700 companies declared themselves insolvent in first three months of the year. That’s almost 20% up on last year. Many cited rising interest rates as the cause.
Insolvency can also be an issue in the financial services sector, although scams are more of a risk.
Following the introduction of a ban on cold calling for pensions back in 2019. The government has announced that it will introduce a blanket ban on any cold calling for any financial products. Including cryptocurrencies.
They are also setting up a new financial fraud team with over 500 investigators to tackle fraud, which now accounts for 40% of all crimes committed and costs the UK economy over £7 billion a year. Even though only 30% of crimes are reported to the police.
For example, the latest survey by www.helpandadvice.co.uk found that 25% of retirees were at risk from pension scams. This was based on data from Money Helper who flag potential fraud cases in pension transfers for further investigation. The main red flags (and numbers affected) were:
- The offer of higher returns – 17%
- The requirement for an instant decision to transfer – 15%
- A secret way to access tax free cash – 10%
- A way for under 55’s to access their pensions – 7%
- Unsolicited approached by advisors – 3%
Financial Consultants recommend that you are vigilant when considering a pension transfer.