Weekly Tax Brief - 29 November 2016

In this edition of RSM’s weekly round-up of the most important tax news, we examine inconsistencies between the government’s policy priorities and the design and operation of the tax system.
Inconsistencies in UK tax policy? Surely not!

29 November 2016

While many people are concerned that tax is becoming more like a political football, and others regret that increasing divisiveness creates an unhealthy environment for the development of new tax measures, there’s no doubt that the UK tax system is consistent with wider government policies. But is it really?

What has HMRC ever done for us?

29 November 2016

If we want to encourage workers from abroad to come to the UK – and it still seems to be government policy to do so – we have to ensure that they are properly treated.

Please HMRC, may we have our tax back?

29 November 2016

In the Autumn Statement, we heard much about new borrowing to boost the economy. But there are plenty of cases where tax is due back to businesses and individuals. Wouldn’t releasing this overpaid tax back into the economy be a simple way of creating a fiscal stimulus?

VAT cuts could help ease the housing crisis

29 November 2016

While the government has asked the Office of Tax Simplification (OTS) to carry out reviews on aspects of the VAT system, this review will avoid any more fundamental review of VAT rates. But why? Widening the scope of VAT reduced rates could help deliver policy priorities and even help tackle the housing crisis.

Time for a VAT cut for the hospitality and leisure sector?

29 November 2016

If Britain is indeed open for business, why is the UK not making greater use of the VAT reduced rate band in hospitality and leisure?