Tax enquiries and investigations, whether they be informal enquiries, formal investigations or disputes in the tax tribunals and courts with HM Revenue & Customs, can be costly and time-consuming for taxpayers.
Our commercial, practical and strategic advice means that we can ease that burden.
Tax authorities have in recent years become more assertive in pursuing taxpayers and challenging their tax affairs. Alongside the upsurge in tax enquiries and investigations, taxpayers should be mindful of any potential reputational damage that can be caused by a tax enquiry or investigation, as how taxpayers arrange their tax affairs is increasingly becoming a matter of significant public interest, as the media, the general public and politicians have become more focused on where tax revenue is coming from and whether taxpayers are paying their 'fair share' of tax.
We encourage clients to be proactive in the area of tax reputation and reduce the risk of adverse publicity or successful tax authority challenge. This can be achieved in a number of ways: advice at the planning or the implementation phase, on both tax risk and reputational aspects; preparing the business for HMRC or press challenges; and training and policies for staff and stakeholders.
In relation to tax enquiries and disputes, the vast majority of these do not result in formal disputes. Involving us at an early stage of any tax enquiry or investigation means that potential challenges by tax authorities can often be mitigated. Where a tax dispute cannot be avoided, we have been able to assist clients to resolve issues and disputes by proactive and cooperative engagement with the UK tax authorities. We have extensive knowledge advising on disputes with tax authorities and early stage enquiries and have been able to resolve many cases through either (i) discussions with the tax authorities, (ii) mediation or (iii) more formal alternative dispute resolution.