Angela Beech, partner at chartered accountants Blick Rothenberg, said: \”Those that receive these demands need to think before they automatically pay up.
\”If you had given HMRC information that would have enabled them to adjust your tax code to make sure that you did pay the right amount of tax, then, if the time limit has passed for them to use that information, they cannot pursue you for the unpaid tax.\”
An HMRC spokesman said: \”HMRC can consider writing off the underpayment in certain circumstances.
\”Basically these are if HMRC had been provided with all the information necessary to get their tax right and the taxpayer could have reasonably expected their tax deductions to be right.
\”In these circumstances they need to contact HMRC and ask for the underpayment to be reviewed on that basis.\”
Now I think we all know how the spirit of the law will be interpreted by certain people. That was the tax rate at the time and you should cough up.
Yet the letter of the law is, in essence, stating that if you did everything right and the government fucked up then, well, the government fucked up and they should carry the costs of their having fucked up.
I wonder if we\’ll see people insisting that following the law is tax avoidance then?