Lords take evidence on Personal Service Companies

02 December 2013

Tax experts, professors and professional bodies will next Monday 2 December be questioned by the new House of Lords Committee charged with investigating the tax issues relating to Personal Service Companies.


Monday 2 December, Committee Room 4, Palace of Westminster:

At 4pm:

  • Professor Judith Freedman - Pinsent Masons Professor of Taxation Law at the University of Oxford;
  • Kate Cottrell - Tax Consultancy Expert and Managing Director of Bauer & Cottrell; and
  • Robin Williamson - Technical Director, Low Incomes Tax Reform Group.

At 5pm:

  • Frank Haskew - Head of the Tax Faculty at the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW);
  • Jason Piper - Technical Manager, Tax and Business Law at the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA); and
  • Patrick Stevens - Tax Policy Director at the Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT).

Likely questions

The Committee will explore with the witnesses issues including:

  • Who the winners – and losers – are, when a worker uses a Personal Service Company (PSC);
  • If there is sufficient understanding of the IR35 rules amongst workers and businesses, and whose responsibility should it be to determine if a business transaction is subject to them;
  • If Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is doing enough to develop statistics and monitoring systems which can provide information on the levels of understanding of PSC tax returns; and
  • How effective the IR35 legislation has been and its overall value in terms of the additional tax income it has generated for the Government.

The Committee will also question the professional bodies on issues such as: 

  • How effectively HMRC works with them and if the introduction of the IR35 forum has changed their working relationship;
  • How well HMRC responds to IR35 enquires and pursuing investigations, and if it needs to establish an agreed set of service performance standards; and
  • If they are aware of any evidence of abuse of the PSC expenses rules, and, if so, how they think it should be addressed.

Further information

Image: iStockphoto

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