So what is Ritchie offering Rowntree for that £35k then?

Despite appearances, this blog is very far from being my full time job,

It’s all slightly lost in the mists of time but didn’t the Tax Research LLP accounts at one point say that the £35 k a year “grant” from the Joseph Rowntree bods was largely to pay for the blog?

26 comments on “So what is Ritchie offering Rowntree for that £35k then?

  1. From the JRCT website it is to fund research while writing his new book.

    Going through TRUK’s accounts, it does seem amazing how much income he generates with so little expense – well over 500% profit margins. You’d think that doing serious research into his papers and books would generate some costs at least….

  2. Tyler, his costs are all opportunity costs. He is turning the power of his polymath mind to simple matters of Tax, economics, politics and social justice. He could of course be running HMRC, a think tank or be a SpAd.

    That’s his cost, which he bears lightly, but cannot be captured on a P&L.

    Candidly, why do you choose not to see that?

  3. Sorry Gay, I forgot the powers of Richard Murphy’s mind. He doesn’t need huge amounts of data to come up with world class research – he just needs a single piece of information he got off the internet and a few hours playing with the train set in his garage….sorry, I meant office.

    Makes me wonder what I was doing wrong when I was doing research and paying for the papers for my lit reviews were costing me a small fortune.

  4. “For which no services were given”. Isn’t that clear enough?

    He is paid a grant to research something…year after year after year after year.

    And now he tells us he has ALWAYS paid tax on it, which strangely doesn’t seem to fit with the statements on the TV UK accounts.

  5. @ Ironman

    He withdraws almost all the cash from TRUK to pay himself. As such, TRUK rarely if ever pays corporation tax. I assume he pays income tax and NI on the money he pay himself, but he does definitely avoid employers NI.

  6. @Gary
    ” He could of course be running HMRC, a think tank or be a SpAd.”

    Why such modest job ideas? He should be Supreme Leader, head of Global Taxation and WGCE-in-Chief of the World.

  7. Tyler – you wouldn’t expect an LLP to pay corporation tax, or employer’s NI, as it’s neither a company nor an employer.

    He’ll suffer Class 4 NI (less than the employer’s NI would be) on the income he gets from the LLP, there’s nothing controversial about that. Withdrawing the cash from the LLP is normal: as 99% member he owns (for tax purposes) 99% of it anyway, so need only leave it in if the LLP needs it.

    The only controversy I can see is if you argue that he shouldn’t be using an LLP at all, but should use a company or receive the income personally. The latter would make no difference to the tax or NI position; the former would if anything save him some NI. As he seems to have been told by his insurer that there needs to be a legal entity for TRUK, I would have thought a company might be more appropriate (a 1% member seems like a device to allow the LLP to exist, rather than reflecting a commercial position), but that’s up to him – he’s following the letter of the law, after all.

    If he’s paying tax on the income from JRF, and they’re happy to pay him it, I can’t get excited by it on tax grounds. One can wonder *why* they pay him it, given that he seems to do little directly in return – but it’s their money, they can spend it as they see fit.

  8. “As such, TRUK rarely if ever pays corporation tax. I assume he pays income tax and NI on the money he pay himself, but he does definitely avoid employers NI”

    I believe Tax Research UK is an LLP so wouldn’t pay corporation tax. Being an LLP and submitting only abbreviated accounts enables you to keep possibly embarrassing information hidden. I noted the following exchange on the MurphMonster’s website (I paraphrase but slightly)

    RM – “Company’s must be tax transparent”

    “What about LLPs?”

    RM – “LLPs must be tax transparent”

    “So LLPs should publish profit allocations and tax paid by partners?”

    RM “No”

    “So LLPs need not be tax transparent?”

    RM “you are a Troll”

    Of course, The MurphMonster did once operate through a company and paid himself dividends (and a small, NIC-free salary) but he ingeniously has denied that this saved NIC as NIC is not due on dividends.

  9. “If he’s paying tax on the income from JRF, and they’re happy to pay him it, I can’t get excited by it on tax grounds. One can wonder *why* they pay him it, given that he seems to do little directly in return – but it’s their money, they can spend it as they see fit.”

    Given Murphy’s concern about poverty, I think it would be jolly courageous of him to work for the JRF on a pro bono basis so they could use the money in another way. Giving it to a poor person perhaps.

  10. Andrew – agreed, they could do that. Perhaps that is regarded as giving a man a fish, whereas Murphy can teach people to do the fishing?

  11. “Andrew – agreed, they could do that. Perhaps that is regarded as giving a man a fish, whereas Murphy can teach people to do the fishing?”

    Is it not possible to teach a man to fish and not charge £35k for the lesson?

    Besides, if Murphy bought similar logic and ideas to teaching people to fish as he does to teaching them about tax, I suspect most of his pupils would drown.

  12. @ Pellinor

    No, there isn’t anything illegal etc regarding what he’s doing.

    I only have a problem with the hypocrisy, as Andrew points out. When someone else does it he wigs out and has one of his usual spittle-flecked diatribes about it. When he does it – nothing to see here.

    Of course, we do assume that all the money he takes out of TRUK gets taxed as income, and he isn’t doing something funny elsewhere to reduce his tax take – only his tax return would show that.

    With what evidence we have, all we know is he has arranged his tax affairs to be as tax efficient as possible – which wouldn’t be a problem if he didn’t continually attack others for doing the same.

    My real gripe is that he gets 35k a year from JRCT as a very non-specific grant. JRCT are supposed to be fairly strict about what grants and projects they support, though in his case it seems to be peculiarly open-ended. Not only that, this money is essentially ploughed into projects for the benefit of one R. Murphy – his books particularly, but giving him the time and freedom for endless self-promotion. Wish I had someone giving me 35k a year, for years, risk free, to set up my own business.

    He manages to top this income up to about 65k a year. Add in his wife’s GP salary and they are comfortably in the 1% – something he really gets upset about when you point it out.

  13. “Respectfully, I presume you think people are idiots”

    If that isn’t an example of muddled thinking, I don’t know what is.

    “William wondered why he always disliked people who said ‘no offence meant.’ Maybe it was because they found it easier to say ‘no offence meant’ than actually refrain from giving offence.”
    ― Terry Pratchett, The Truth

  14. Well, I’m no tax expert. But it does seem to be stretching it a bit far to argue that RJM would lie about his TRUK partnership share, given that all HMRC would have to do to verify it is download his accounts from Companies House.

    As has been noted above, by including the JRCT grant within partnership income then it will become taxable unless he excludes it in his tax return. He has said that he doesn’t adjust for it, and given that clear statement there’s no reason to presume that he has.

  15. @ Christie

    I think there is general agreement that Murphy isn’t doing anything too funny with his taxes, though is certainly managing his taxes in an efficient manner.

    I think the more pertinent question is why does he get an open-ended 35k grant from JRCT and what is it really for, given JRCT are not giving out any more grants at the moment.

  16. Pellinor>

    “he’s following the letter of the law, after all.”

    Is he even doing that? I understood that there are proscriptions against obviously fake arrangements like his LLP? I forget the term, is it something like ‘transactions of no commercial substance’?

    In any case, this is Ritchie we’re talking about. He’s very likely to be engaging in actual criminal tax fraud and tax evasion out of a sense of entitlement (because, after all, he believes everyone else does it), much the same way Julian Assange believed he had a divine right to rape. HMRC really ought to investigate him particularly thoroughly.

  17. He’d only cry they were doing so because he keeps pointing out their errors.
    The fact they aren’t errors doesn’t make a difference.

  18. I do hope that Tim does not get piqued at this comment and blatant trolling link. I have just created a new blog called Comments Policy TRUK.

    I am not sure how many other people her e have tried and failed to comment at TRUK, I thought it would be worth having a central repository of all those vanishing and edited comments.

    It is a work in progress, but I intend to follow troll him across every single media he uses; if he is on BBC, I will Tweet. If he is in the Guardian I will post. If he is on the wireless I will call in. If he hides behind the protection of his own “silencing of dissent” policy, I will link to it from there.

    Who knows, I may even by a few quid worth of Google ads, because I believe that the risk this man poses to our way of life is a clear and present danger.

    If anybody is interesting in joining the editorial team, feel free to email through the site.

    WE POST WHAT MURPHY DON’T

    http://commentspolicytruk.blogspot.co.uk/

  19. CP TRUK>

    I’ve repeatedly failed to get Ritchie to confirm or deny the rumour that he’s banned from his local because most people in his village want to break his face. Next time I’m up that way, I’ll pop in and ask them.

    If you want me to nail ninety-five comments to his front door while I’m there…

  20. @ Martin/ Arnald:

    Martin,I do belive that is the Murph himslef ; )

    Arnald, do you not mean “twat” singular, after all every other comment is reasonable.

    @ Surreptitious Evil: sorry, but i did mean to cross the grammar nazi, the way it flowed off the tongue just seemed a bit better?

  21. “Martin,I do belive that is the Murph himslef ; )”

    No, but that’s funny! Little boy.

Leave a Reply

Name and email are required. Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.