Health professionals under the HMRC spotlight

In 2010 HM Revenue & Customs decided they would run regular campaigns focusing on specific sectors of UK business one sector at a time. The campaigns allow an amnesty period ranging from six weeks to six months for individuals within that sector to come forward and voluntarily disclose any unpaid tax in return for favourable payment and penalty terms.

The table below shows the most recent figures available which demonstrate how effective these campaigns have been since their inception back in 2010:

Campaign Revenue as of 31 July 2013
VAT Initiative Campaign £19,843,000
VAT Outstanding Returns £70,000
Tax Return Initiative £80,214,000
Tax Health Plan £53,697,000
Tax Catch Up Plan £1,248,000
Plumbers Tax Safe Plan £9,603,000
Electricians Tax Safe Plan £1,285,000
Direct Selling £252,000
E-Marketplaces £3,762,000
Property Sales Campaign £TBA
My Tax Return Catch Up £TBA
Offshore Disclosure Facility £508,590,000
Offshore New Disclosure Opportunity £124,300,000
Total £802,864,000

On 7 October 2013 the newest campaign was launched focusing on health and wellbeing professionals. It is likely that the reason this sector was chosen is because more than £53million was collected when the health profession was chosen as one of the first campaigns. Whilst this new campaign is not targeting the same health professions as the first time round, it is likely it will again prove to be a lucrative move by them. 

If you operate within the physical therapy, alternative medicine/therapy or other therapy sectors and are not confident your tax affairs are up to date and accurate, now is the time to act. The new campaign closes on 31 December 2013 after which HM Revenue & Customs will look closely at the affairs of people in these areas early in the new year and subsequently raise enquiries into individuals where they believe the tax affairs are not correct. Whilst voluntary disclosure will not reduce the tax you owe, it will help significantly with the penalties which will be levied against you. For voluntary disclosure your penalties are capped at 20% of the outstanding tax. If HM Revenue & Customs find errors and approach you, the penalties can be 100% of the outstanding tax.

At Armstrong Watson we have a wealth of knowledge on all areas of taxation and the sectors which regularly come under the HM Revenue & Customs spotlight. Should you have any doubts in relation to your tax affairs please do not hesitate to contact us so we can help make sure you do not fall foul of these ever increasing campaigns.

Steven Metcalf, Business Services Manager


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