Tax man targets solicitors

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HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is urging solicitors to get their tax affairs in order or face tougher penalties.

Its Solicitors’ Tax Campaign is HMRC’s latest voluntary disclosure campaign.

It has previously targeted medical professionals, plumbers, tutors, electricians and online traders.

Solicitors have until March 9 to tell HMRC that they would like to take part in the campaign, and until June 9 to disclose the tax they owe and pay it.

There are more than 8,912 solicitors – around 7% of the UK total – in the North West.

Caroline Addison, head of campaigns at HMRC, said: “Information gathered by HMRC has allowed us to identify solicitors who thought they could operate without declaring income and paying the taxes that others have to pay.

“If you have not declared all of your income, you need to put your tax affairs in order. Take this chance to come forward and put things right in a straightforward way and on the best possible terms. It will be easier and cheaper for you to come to us than for us to come to you.

“Those who make a deliberate decision not to pay the taxes due could face a penalty of 100% or more of the tax due, or even a criminal prosecution.”