The Office of Tax Simplification (OTS) has identified 1,042 tax reliefs as a first step towards streamlining the UK tax system.
Having published what it claims is the first comprehensive list of the reliefs and allowances available, the OTS asked if has missed any out, and invited comments on its website from those who take advantage of the allowances.
“I am sure some people will be surprised by the sheer number of reliefs in today’s tax system,” commented John Whiting, tax director for the Office of Tax Simplification. “Many have a clear and highly valued benefit so clearly we would not seek to change those. Others, however, may simply no longer be used, or are too complex and burdensome to be properly effective, so it is these that I want my team to focus on.”
Perhaps in response to criticisms from the likes of TAXtv’s Giles Mooney that the OTS lacked input from small companies and their advisers, the body set up two consultative committees reflecting more varied communities.
The tax reliefs review consultative committee includes ACCA’s head of tax Chas Roy-Choudhury, former ICAEW Tax Faculty chairs Paul Aplin (AC Mole & Co) and Francesca Lagerberg (Grant Thornton) and Atlas Chambers barrister Keith Gordon. A parallel committee advising on the small business tax review includes AccountingWEB.co.uk contributor Simon Sweetman, ICAEW Tax Faculty technical manager Anita Monteith, Anne Redstone and Chris Bryce, chairman of the PCG.