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Unanswerable questions

CIOT survey

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I have been invited to take part in a CIOT survey on PE/CGS. All fairly straightforward until I get to question 28:

"If the threshold for land and property is increased, do you think HMRC should consider having a different threshold for alterations, extensions, annexes and refurbishments, or would it increase complexity?"

How does one answer that yes/no question?

It's like having a referendum question that asked "Do you think that UK should leave EU, or would that be a bad idea?"

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By Tax Dragon
08th Aug 2019 16:33

Is it a comma or a bullet?

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RLI
By lionofludesch
08th Aug 2019 16:39

I got a letter from HMRC this week asking me if I could provide a bank statement in support of a dispute of the following entry in an P800.

HMRC Estimate £1068

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By 356B
09th Aug 2019 17:06

Well the only answer is "Yes".

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Replying to 356B:
Psycho
By Wilson Philips
09th Aug 2019 18:38

"No" works just as well, sorry, I mean badly. The point is that the "or" implies that the answers to the two parts of the question are contradictory. Implying for instance that if there is increased complexity then the answer to the first part must be "no".

But perhaps I do think there should be different thresholds even though there is increased complexity. I agree that a "yes" sort of deals with that but that imports an "and", which doesn't exist, into the question. Likewise, I might not think different thresholds a good idea, but for reasons other than increased complexity - which I might think would also exist (but which, to be fair, can be dealt with in the comments box).

And in my EU analogy it is almost impossible to make a single "yes" or "no" answer make sense.

I'm just ranting, though.

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Jennifer Adams
By Jennifer Adams
09th Aug 2019 17:13

Threshold for what exactly? Threshold of the amount you can claim?

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Replying to Jennifer Adams:
Psycho
By Wilson Philips
09th Aug 2019 18:01

CGS threshold

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By Matrix
09th Aug 2019 23:56

I think there were two other possible responses - possibly and don’t know. Not much of the survey was relevant to me as don’t have partially exempt clients or any experience of CGS.

So there were some I don’t know answers.

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Replying to Matrix:
Psycho
By Wilson Philips
10th Aug 2019 09:49

There were indeed those other two responses but with the same problem. What if you knew the answer to one part of the question but didn’t know. or were unsure of, the other?

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By LostinSuspense
14th Aug 2019 16:42

The answer is "Avocado", if in doubt use the same logic they do.

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