HMRC have signalled that they plan to ramp up penalties for offshore tax evaders as there seem to be more and more cases of tax evasion reported throughout the media.
From October this year, HMRC will collect more data from places such as the Isle of Man, Guernsey, Jersey and other overseas territories where investors may hold their investments. Fines of up to three times the amount of tax originally due will be imposed as a deterrent to those considering evasion methods.
People have been given a reprieve and have been told to “fess up” and pay the tax they owe before they are caught and slapped with hefty fines, and HMRC seem determined to catch the evaders out.
Perhaps those who evade paying their tax don’t realise the strain it puts on other tax payers, the vast majority of whom will pay their tax in full and on time. Hopefully this is the start of the end for tax evasion and HMRC will stick to their word about tougher sanctions and, in doing so, make tax evasion sufficiently unappealing to wipe it out completely.