Just think of all that lovely granular de-anonymised data NatWest will get !
I wonder how it will feed into the loan application (and more importantly, rate-setting) process. Could it help them identify assets to acquire in the way RBS's now discredited business recovery unit did ? Which marketing agencies and other third parties will NatWest sell the data to ?
We've already seen letters from random water companies no-one's heard of before claiming to be the new supplier, sometimes including Direct Debit mandates which they "require" to be filled in and returned urgently.
Looks like all the dodgy salesmen who used to bounce people's contracts for the power companies are going to have a new happy hunting ground.
I agree with this in principle, because it is reasonable for those e-tailers who follow the rules and pay the correct tax, VAT etc should have a level playing field rather than having to compete against those who choose the path of tax evasion (which is what it is, not avoidance, if you choose not to pay tax on online sales). It is also reasonable that HMRC look for badges of trade as the test of whether it's someone just clearing their loft, or actively trading.
However, I trust that HMRC sought the appropriate warrants etc in order to get Amazon, eBay etc to hand over the records. Otherwise, it would be a clear breach of customer confidentiality by those platforms.
It would also be rather nice if HMRC were to try to apply correct import duties to Chinese sellers masquerading as having a UK location (usually selling on eBay & Amazon) and then shipping at highly subsidised postage costs from China and marking the value down and sending the products as "gifts"
Kobi - you should probably start a new thread rather then taking this one off topic.
For what it's worth, the first thing you should do is gather all the evidence you have to prove what has happened. Have you contacted your accountant to see what they say ? If they are avoiding contact, talk to their professional body, assuming they have one.
But if the situation is as serious as you make it sound, people on a forum can only offer so much help, you really need to get professional advice, both from a good accountant, and possibly also from a solicitor. If you genuinely think your ex-accountant has stolen the money, you'll need very good documentary evidence, both to go to the police with if it comes to that, and also to avoid being accused of slander if it turns out that it's a false accusation.
You need to keep in contact with HMRC, but ideally appoint an accountant you trust to do this for you, to ensure that HMRC don't try to intimidate you into agreeing anything you shouldn't. Good luck.
An impressive piece of tax avoidance !
Blame the previous board for over-inflated asset values, then write them down so you've got billions in losses to offset against the next few years' profits, and hey presto, a significantly reduced Corporation Tax bill.
So that explains why Margaret Hodge (in her role as chairman of the Public Accounts Committee) attacked HMRC's handling of reliefs and the reliefs themselves so vigorously yesterday.
Clearly the next strand of attack; make people claiming relief seem like tax dodgers, in the same way they have with people trying to minimise the tax they pay through avoidance schemes. I wonder if they will create retrospective legislation to claw back previously-legal reliefs ?
RTI on steroids for small businesses
To me, this looks like RTI for the self employed, sole traders and partnerships, with the added twist that HMRC can dip their fingers into people's bank accounts and take what they like.
If (as seems to be implied) it works so that when you hit the month end button, it automatically posts the figures to HMRC, does this mean that they'll be getting their tax receipts 18 months or so earlier than at present ?
More to the point, in the scenarios raybacker lists, where a business has inventory or other items which can throw in timing differences that distort a month's figures, I can see a situation where a business will show artificially large profits in (say) months 1 and 3, and a loss in month 2, but by the end of the year it'll have all come out correctly apart from a few pre-payments and/or accruals.
Will HMRC return rebates as rapidly as they take tax over-payments caused by this system ?
Perhaps next, HMRC will want all revenues directly paid to themselves, keep what they want and give employees and the self employed a bit of pocket money from what is left over....
Wouldn't it be easier for the banks to apply new sort codes to their newly hived-off investment arms, and keep the retail sort codes as they are ?
This just smacks of the banks trying to deliberately make life awkward for the public (i.e. the taxpayers whose billions bailed them out) as a bit of petty revenge for having their nice cozy arrangements broken up.
Perhaps we could agree a deal with them.
We'll scrap zero rates the day after independent auditors sign off the EU's accounts. That should keep food zero rated at least for my lifetime.....
This isn't capitalism.
This isn't capitalism.
I agree that some businesses aren't viable and should be allowed to go under; that is a natural evolution and is how capitalism should work.
But RBS were destroying perfectly viable businesses by a variety of thoroughly dishonest methods. These methods may have been (borderline) legal, but the intent was short-termist and intended to cause deliberate harm.