Accelerated Payment Notice

New powers given to H.M.Revenue and Customs (HMRC) to clamp down on alleged tax avoidance include the ability to make people pay disputed tax in advance.

Known as The Accelerated Payment Notice or APN, it allows HMRC to take money before the outcome of a tax tribunal has been settled.

This can occur in cases where an individual is believed to be using arrangements that have been identified under the disclosure of tax avoidance scheme rules or where a general anti-abuse rule counteraction notice has been sent.

To make matters more complicated, APNs apply to any arrangements entered into in the past, not just new arrangements entered into after the launch of legislation earlier this year.

APNs have the potential to affect everyone from individuals and companies, to partnerships and trusts.

Under the new rules, people who receive an APN have 90 days to pay the disputed tax, after which they can make their case in court or at a tribunal and if found to have not been responsible for the disputed tax refunded.

Many businesses may find that the sums involved mean that they have to consider restructuring your business or even contemplate insolvency. However, by not leaving it too late firms can avoid penalties that may apply to late payment.

Acting now is key to managing any future concerns over APNs. Our team of tax experts at Watson Buckle can help you pre-plan tax arrangements to meet the threat of unexpected APNs.

Importantly we can help with requesting pay arrangements with HMRC to minimise the scope for late payment penalties and reduce the burden on your company’s finances.

For more contact, our APN specialist John Kinsella

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