They\’re still getting it wrong!

Look, I\’m no defender of Ashcroft but really, The Observer should be better than this:

Ashcroft promised to become a permanent resident of the UK as a condition of his ennoblement in 2000. A year earlier, he had been rejected as a member of the Lords by the political honours scrutiny committee. But successive Conservative leaders have since refused to reveal whether he has fulfilled his promise to take up UK residency.

Pressure on Ashcroft increased last week when the information commissioner accused the Tory leadership of being \”evasive and obfuscatory\” over his tax status, the Guardian revealed. The Cabinet Office has been ordered to reveal within 29 days the nature of the undertaking that Ashcroft made to become domiciled in the UK when he became a peer in 2000.

Residency and domicile are two different things!

It\’s very difficult indeed to see why someone needs to be domiciled in the UK in order to be a peer: Lord Paul, on the Labour benches, is not domiciled.

If Ashcroft promised something then sure, he should be held to that promise. But can we please at least try and be accurate about what it is that he promised so that we can then decide whether he has kept it?

2 thoughts on “They\’re still getting it wrong!”

  1. There is no reason why a peer should be so domiciled, but it does (typcially, through the adoption of England as a domicile of choice or the revival of an English domicile of origin) have the effect of leaving the peer chargeable to UK tax on worldwide income and wealth, being the mischief at which the pledge made by Ashcroft was directed.

    Regardless of the means by which the objective was to be achieved, the substance of the promise by Ashcroft (and, for that matter, Laidlaw also) was they would pay their full whack of UK tax.

    Ashcroft can give the Uk the tax, backdated to 2000, on an “as if” basis, for all I care. He can retain his domicile in Belize. The good people of Belize are welcome to him.

  2. Be nice to know how many current Union leaders are domiciled (at least in spirit) in Stalin’s Russia. Of course they would merely be following in the footsteps of their illustrious union predecessors.

    Alan Douglas

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