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Another tax avoidance does pay decision

https://files.pumptax.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/03155627/Decision-TC-2018-06225-Others-Geoffrey

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Interestingly, if the advisor had been more competent & expert at SDLT the taxpayers would probably not have succeeded, which is ironic*. HMRC will be most upset (I'm not sure why there was no 20 year DA period for failing to file the amended SDLT return.) Well done to the taxpayers' counsel.

https://files.pumptax.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/03155627/Decision-T...

* also HMRC should have submitted some evidence per para 151, so this was really an HMRC c*ck-up and perhaps they should have instructed counsel (who might also have argued the 20 year DA point) rather than using an in-house HMRC litigator, especially when presumably there was a lot of SDLT at stake. 

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Jason Croke
By Jason Croke
07th Sep 2021 14:35

I quite like at 122 how the taxpayers denied being involved in an avoidance scheme and indeed, didn't even know what they were signing or getting into and quite rightly found as not credible by the Court.

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By Justin Bryant
07th Sep 2021 15:13

Para 119 is possibly more amusing. Reading between the lines it's pretty clear his WS was not his own words but was drafted by a lawyer (by counsel probably) for him to sign and the judge failed to appreciate that possibility. His oral testimony was not helpful to his case, yet the judge "bought it" so to speak re the more on-piste WS .

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By Justin Bryant
07th Sep 2021 14:50

In fact, reflecting on this, possibly the judge should have spotted the 20 year DA period point herself (which requires no taxpayer carelessness/negligence) per paras 16 & 22, and assuming that's right this is yet another example of FTT judges not understanding SDLT (you'd think she would have at least mentioned why this was not relevant - I cannot fathom why it was not relevant).

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