That over-weening state

HMRC has been charging too much tax:

HM Revenue & Customs has refunded millions of pounds to taxpayers who paid its controversial loan charge.

But only a fraction of those who applied for a refund have so far received any money, meaning hundreds of taxpayers face a longer wait for their cash to be returned.

The taxman has so far refunded, or waived, £3.6m to 50 taxpayers who paid the loan charge, at an average of £72,000 each, a Freedom of Information request submitted by this newspaper has revealed.

And here’s the bit:

The remuneration schemes, which were legal at the time,

So HMRC has been charging taxes, unlawfully, on something that was entirely legal? That benevolent state idea is looking a bit iffy, no?

11 thoughts on “That over-weening state”

  1. It’s all a bit of a mess.

    HMRC have been charging tax in accordance with a set of rules that were legislated, but have now been held to be rather unfair and so they’re repaying the tax people paid over.

    Essentially, the loan charge says ‘we haven’t been able to demonstrate that what you did was incorrect, but whether it was correct or not we don’t like it so we’ll retrospectively charge the tax that we’d prefer to have been due’.

    I’m not sure where they’re going to do nest. My impression is that they’re trying to get the cash back to people asap, but I don’t know if they’re going to go back to the old method of getting the tax back via enquiries, or just give the whole thing up as a bad job.

  2. So HMRC has been charging taxes, unlawfully, on something that was entirely legal?

    If HMRC has been charging tax in accordance with the Richard Murphy definition of legal it would be entirely fair and reasonable for them not to be repaying it.

  3. And versa vice – the sasha johnson, john prescott, dennis skinner alma mater Ruskin hall has been buggered by over-claiming their funding. The DoE giving it to them in the first place but then saying hold on that ain’t right give us back 5million, which of course had already been spent. I discovered this when some of the reports said Sasha was an oxford grad with a first. After hearing her speak i did think something not quite right not the accent so much as the content. Anyway a few other reports said oxford brooks which you know if not Oxon is still half decent, but then yep Ruskin college neé hall, made perfect sense.

  4. @Hallowedbe Actually it isn’t even Oxford Brookes. As reported here, the degree is actually a Foundation degree taught at Swindon poly, upon which OB have graciously bestowed their mantle. Not exactly dreaming spires.

  5. I wonder if Murphy’s tax gap ‘research’ includes looking at instances of – and including in the net – government overtaxing?

  6. Alex- this is Sasha’s degree we’re talking about? Sociology i think it was supposed to be. I’d read the Ruskin College degrees were Open university. I’ll look at the threads again, must have missed this discussion.

  7. @Hallowed be. The location of said degree is unclear. The Grauniad and the FT have updated their stories to suggest that she graduated from Ruskin College. Since her bio at the TTIP says social work, I think people assumed it was the foundation degree at Oxford Brookes, which is delivered in Swindon. The FT and guardian now claims her degree is in community development and youth work.

    I suspect that this update is incorrect. Both the FT and Grauniad probably looked at the only BA course currently offered by Ruskin and assumed it was the one that she studied. But in reality Ruskin did do a degree in social work, which was cancelled last year:

    Validated as you say by the OU.

  8. HMRC?

    here’s a fun one from the archives

    There’s 2 more DT pieces pulled on the court case where you couldn’t get fag paper between HMRC’s antics and perjury / contempt of court.

    Louise Brittain doesn’t exactly come out of it smelling of roses – sailing very closely indeed to the rocks of perjury.

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