Tax update March 2018

Published on 27 February 2018

In this month’s update we report on HMRC’s recently published guidance on the Serial Tax Avoidance Regime, venture capital schemes and non-domicile reforms.

We also comment on three recent cases relating to discovery assessments; closure notices; and set-off of corporation tax losses against general income.

News items

HMRC publishes guidance on the Serial Tax Avoidance Regime
On 12 January 2018, HMRC published guidance on the Serial Tax Avoidance Regime legislation contained in Schedule 18, Finance Act 2016.

HMRC updates guidance on Venture Capital Schemes
On 21 December 2017, HMRC updated its Venture Capital Schemes Manual.

HMRC publishes guidance on non-domicile reforms
On 31 January 2018, HMRC published fresh guidance in relation to the taxation of non-domiciled individuals and offshore trusts following the changes contained in Finance (No. 2) Act 2017 and the Finance Bill 2018.

Case reports

Cooke – Tribunal allows taxpayer’s appeal against discovery assessment
In Cooke v HMRC [2017] UKFTT 844 (TC), the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) has allowed an appeal against a discovery assessment issued by HMRC pursuant to section 29, Taxes Management Act 1970 (TMA). The FTT found that the "hypothetical offcer" could have been reasonably expected to be aware that certain claims in the taxpayer’s return were excessive.

Beneficial House – Tribunal orders HMRC to issue closure notices
In Beneficial House (Birmingham) Regeneration LLP and Stanley Dock (All Suite) Regeneration LLP v HMRC [2017] UKFTT 0801 (TC), the FTT directed HMRC to issue closure notices in respect of HMRC’s ongoing enquires into the taxpayers’ returns in which they had claimed Business Premises Renovation Allowance (BPRA) in respect of certain hotel conversions.

English Holdings – Tribunal allows set-off of corporation tax loss against general income
In English Holdings Ltd v HMRC [2016] UKFTT 0346 (TC), the Upper Tribunal (UT) has upheld a decision of the FTT which allowed an appeal by a non-UK resident company against a decision of HMRC refusing its claim to set off losses arising in its UK permanent establishment (PE) against profits earned by its UK property rental business.



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