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Missing income???

Missing income???

I'm posting this for a fellow accountant who's embarrassed to ask

He has been asked to submit 3 years self assessment returns for a moderately well off 90 year old lady the information for which has been compiled by a family friend. It consists of all the usual income sources plus foreign dividends. By comparison with the 2007/8 return it is obvious that some income sources are mising /incomplete. The family friend cannot obtain/clarify any further and the taxpayer looks blank when questioned

The query put is what do you suggest the accountant does from the following?

1. Send an explanatory letter to HMRC (?trigger immediate investigation)

2. Allow the taxpayer to sign the form and submit it without further explanation (" It is HER return not his")

3. Resign and pay back the fees he has already been paid

4. Any other wise suggestions the multitude may offer

This is not something that should trigger MLR/SOCA procedures as it is completely innocent and not designed to hide income

Thanks for your help


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09th May 2012 09:57

What is the nature of the income?

The type of income that may be missing is relevant. Can you elaborate?



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09th May 2012 10:04

A mixture of UK & foreign

A mixture of UK & foreign dividends

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09th May 2012 10:16


Does he have access to Extel or somesuch programme, otherwise reconstruct the dividends from google searches if they are listed companies.

Bank statements should confirm either a cheque desposit or a direct payment to the account.

Are they held in a portfolio, if so the broker should have the details as well as any disposals.

Foreign in theory you might be able toget the same way.

Alternatively a best guess on the return in line with previous years.

If the client "looks blank" is it likley she has bought and sold on her own accord.


Or is the inference they have been disposed of by a third party?

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09th May 2012 10:20

Who compiled the information?

As we are talking about investment income which can change significantly over time anyway and especially if there has been disposals - gifts to children or straight sales then it may be the returns you are looking it are quite legitmate.

Furthermore, and a terrible generalisation but I usually find that the older folks are much better at organising their paperwork. If dividend warrants are being sent, they will usually end up in the envelope with the letters from the DWP, the bank statements and the cheque for the winter fuel payment. 

Have you considered going through the bank statements?  


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