Weekly Tax Brief - 9 February 2017

In this edition of RSM’s weekly round-up of the most important tax news, we cover the latest developments.
After Brexit, the UK tax system must not develop in isolation

09 February 2017

The UK may be about to leave the EU but, in tax terms at least, it is not an island. Brexit and the evolving demands which will be placed on the UK tax system provide a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to review tax policy and to create a tax system which is much more closely aligned to the needs of the nation. Although parliamentary time is limited the UK tax system must not be allowed to develop in isolation.

Private landlords should not sleep-walk into new tax rules

09 February 2017

The tax rules regarding buy-to-let property have long been complex. However things are about to become even more difficult for individuals who are landlords of residential property.

Why is HMRC taking a harder line on penalties?

09 February 2017

It is right that those who deliberately understate their tax liabilities are subject to the full force of HMRC’s penalty regime. But we have real concerns that some HMRC officers might – in an attempt to raise revenue – be seeking to wrongly and unfairly deem behaviour to be ‘deliberate’ in cases where the taxpayer has made a genuine mistake.

Mind the (VAT) gap

09 February 2017

VAT is a major and growing source of tax revenue in the EU, but a report issued last year highlights that Member States in the European Union are losing billions of euros in VAT revenues because of tax fraud and inadequate tax collection systems.

Exchequer’s VAT windfall on commissions for non-EU students

09 February 2017

The latest figures from the Higher Education Statistics Agency highlight an increased number of students from China, Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia enrolling at UK universities and further education colleges, leading to a VAT windfall for the Exchequer.