What is tax avoidance?
16/06/2022

There is a distinction to be drawn between tax avoidance and tax evasion. Tax evasion is illegal and describes a situation where someone acts to deliberately evade tax. This could include deliberately submitting false tax returns, falsely claiming repayments or reliefs or hiding income, gains or wealth offshore.

Tax avoidance on the other hand can describe a situation whereby a taxpayer takes advantage of the tax rules to reduce the tax they pay without breaking the law.

However, the lines between the two can get blurred as can be seen in the comments made by HMRC below. 

HMRC’s own guidance to help taxpayers spot the signs of tax avoidance, states that ‘tax avoidance involves bending the tax rules to try to gain a tax advantage that was never intended. It usually involves contrived transactions that serve no real purpose other than to artificially reduce the amount of tax that someone has to pay. It is not the same as effective tax planning but is often promoted as such'.

There is of course no restriction on taxpayers taking full advantage of tax reliefs and allowances in the legislation. This is not tax evasion [or tax avoidance in HMRC's terms] rather just paying the minimum allowable without breaking the law. Again, the lines between tax avoidance and tax planning can also get blurred. If you are approached to take part in a tax avoidance scheme, it is important to take proper professional advice and be aware that HMRC does not condone the use of schemes that they see as promoting tax avoidance.


About us  

Celerica are a firm of accountants and registered auditors (regulated by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants).

Our team and associates have worked not only as accountants within the profession but also as Finance Director’s for businesses allowing us to use our wide experience to make a positive impact on your business.

The business was established in 2006 but its roots and relationship of the partners goes back to 1988.  Our client base extends across the UK and many different business sectors.  Though our office is in Leicester we take the ‘we will come to you’ approach and are always happy to travel to see you, wherever you are.

Contact us

First Floor
The Old Chapel
9 Kempson Road 
Leicester
LE2 8AN


0116 2838038
contact@celerica.co.uk

Membership

   

JUMP TO TOP