Loan charge review delayed by election

Taxpayers will have to wait until a new government is formed to find out the outcome of the Morse review into the loan charge

Jesse Norman, financial secretary to the Treasury, has informed Sir Amyas Morse, chair of the independent review into the controversial loan charge rules, that the mid-November deadline, originally set out by the Chancellor Sajid Javid, can no longer observed as parliament has dissolved.

A new government is due to be in place in mid-December after the 12 December election.

In a letter to Morse, Norman said: ‘In light of this, and the clear Cabinet Office guidance about what decisions can be made in a pre-election period, ministers have agreed that it would be most appropriate for your report to be submitted to the new government on its formation.’

The loan charge review into repayments related to the disputed tax avoidance schemes was launched in September. This followed sustained criticism of the loan charge rules to claw back tax and national insurance contributions (NICs) from contractors operating through umbrella companies and paid in loans – known as disguised remuneration – dating back over a decade or more.

The Conservative led government was forced to launch an independent review to  consider whether the loan charge was the right way to deal with individuals’ use of the disputed tax avoidance schemes.

The review is focusing on the impact on those individuals who were using the schemes directly, and whether the loan charge policy is an appropriate way of dealing with disguised remuneration loan schemes used by individuals who entered directly into these schemes to avoid paying tax, in the view of the government and HMRC. This reflects the main concerns raised by MPs and campaigners about the loan charge.

Sara White

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