Weekly tax brief | 3 July 2018

Are tax policy and populism pulling in opposite directions?
George Bull
Weak governments with slender majorities will always struggle to enact new taxes, no matter how compelling the fiscal case may be. With the pressing need to resolve massive issues such as NHS funding, social care and the gig economy, all of which have a tax dimension, we urge the government to engage in an open debate about what the future tax system might look like rather than pulling more short-lived rabbits out of the Budget Day hat.

HMRC is not immune from the debate on data privacy
Andrew Hubbard
HMRC has recently published an update of its data privacy policy which takes account of its obligations under GDPR. It has also just appointed a new data protection officer at a senior level. No doubt, the new occupant of the post will be kept extremely busy. 

Exaggerate your income and risk deportation
Rachel de Souza
Recent press commentary suggests that the Home Office are investigating a number of cases where immigrants have overstated their income when applying to remain in the UK. With greater flows of information passing between departments and across borders, government artificial intelligence is getting more efficient at 'joining the dots'. 

Online VAT fraud figures don’t match Official Statistics
David Wilson
As there seems to be some inconsistency in the figures being reported, just how accurate are HMRC estimates that online VAT fraud and error cost between £1bn and £1.5bn in lost tax revenue?

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