Weekly tax brief| 18 October 2022

In this edition of RSM’s weekly round-up of the most important tax news, we cover the latest developments. Please feel free to share this update with any of your colleagues.

HMRC sinks its claws into cat scratching posts
Sarah Halsted
A recent appeal concerning the rate of duty payable on scratching posts for cats highlights the importance of correctly classifying imported goods when clearing them through customs.

HMRC to wind down Taxpayer Protection Taskforce, but is the job done?
Susan Ball and Carolyn Brown
A recent policy paper from HMRC outlines plans to wind down Taxpayer Protection Taskforce activity for fraud and compliance issues in relation to COVID-19 financial support schemes from March 2023. However, with an estimated £4bn yet to be retrieved from erroneous and fraudulent claims, is HMRC’s job really done? 

HMRC in new crackdown on R&D claims by businesses
Matt Taylor
HMRC is accelerating its plans to form a Research and Development Anti Abuse Unit to crackdown on claims made by large and small companies, while nudge letters are also being issued to businesses urging them to check their R&D claims. Businesses should ensure their claims are correct to avoid being targeted.

The latest chancellor makes entrepreneurs a book-balancing tax scapegoat, for now
Stephanie Court
In the emergency statement on Monday 17 October, Hunt reaffirmed his party’s ‘deeply held value that people should keep more of the money they earn’. Yet, business owners are left holding the baby of the tax burden.

The slow death of the trust
Chris Etherington
The legal concept of a trust is arguably one of the UK’s greatest ever exports but recent statistics show that their usage continues to dramatically decline. Why have they fallen so far out of fashion when they could be playing a key role in bridging the wealth gap between generations?

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