Labyrinthine tax rules.

Les Howard
VAT Consultant
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The Times (Monday 17th October) reported an item from Accountants UHY Hacker Young. (Sorry, I couldn't find an online link!)

The article mentioned that HMRC recovered an additional £600million in APD (Air Passenger Duty) last year, compared to £16million the year before. Hacker Young described the legislation as 'labyrinthine.'

Back in the early 70s, the promise was that VAT would be a simple tax. Nearly 40 years on, labyrinthine is a much better description! Other taxes are similarly complex. Frequently I come across small businesses with complex VAT issues.  Often, it proves expensive to find comprehensive solutions. Some taxpayers prefer to take the risk, rather than engage a professional adviser.

Personally, I cannot see VAT becoming more simple. One the one hand, I don't mind, as it is my job to advise on VAT! On the other hand more smaller businesses are being affected by these labyrinthine rules, and that is expensive.


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