UK tax news service
HM Revenue and Customs information
Banks to disclose all offshore account information to HMRC
The Tax Chamber of the First-tier Tribunal have today ordered over 300 banks to give details to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) about their customers who hold offshore accounts.
HMRC can now issue the information notices to banks ahead of the New Disclosure Opportunity (NDO). The NDO will allow people with unpaid taxes linked to offshore accounts or assets to settle their tax liabilities at a favourable penalty rate.
HMRC will use this information to ensure everyone pays the right tax and to check that NDO disclosures are complete.
Under the rules of the NDO, people who make a complete and accurate disclosure will qualify for a 10% penalty. Those who choose not to take this opportunity and are subsequently found to have undeclared tax liabilities are likely to face a 30% or higher penalty and also run an increased risk of criminal prosecution.
The Right Honourable Stephen Timms MP, Financial Secretary to the Treasury said:
"It is wrong that some people evade paying their fair share of tax by hiding assets in offshore accounts. Today's ruling represents real progress in creating a level playing field for all taxpayers."
Dave Hartnett, HMRC Permanent Secretary for Tax, said:
“I know there are people who regret not taking advantage of our Offshore Disclosure Facility (ODF) in 2007 which focused primarily on the customers of five large banks. Today we have successfully applied to get information on the offshore accounts and assets of customers of over 300 further banks. I urge any of them who have unpaid tax liabilities connected to these accounts now or in the past to come forward and make a full disclosure during the NDO because we will use the information provided by the 300 banks to pursue those people who continue to flout the UK’s tax laws.”
12 August 2009
Source: HMRC – Reproduced under the terms of the Click-Use License.
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