Overcoming difficulties together
Dealing with tax affairs can be daunting enough at the best of times, but dealing with a tax investigation or compliance checks by HMRC can cause a great deal of anxiety whether you’re a sole trader, an employer or a PAYE worker. At Branch Austin McCormick, we bring together barristers, solicitors and accountants with extensive experience in tax affairs to make sure that whatever kind of tax problems or complex investigations you may be facing, you’ve got a non-judgemental team of experts on your side.Contact us
What triggers a tax investigation?
There are many factors which may trigger a tax investigation by HMRC, but the most common include unusual activity on accounts or even just the nature of the industry in which you operate. The main specific factors which trigger civil tax investigations are major discrepancies in income from one year to the next, your accounts not matching industry norms, frequent late filing of tax returns or your industry being seen as high-risk when it comes to tax evasion. More often, however, compliance checks will occur at random.
What happens when HMRC launches a tax investigation?
HMRC will first send a letter requesting information regarding any perceived anomalies. Once the issue is identified, it may simply be a case that you’ve overpaid or underpaid your tax and will either receive a rebate or be required to make up the shortfall. When HMRC suspects deliberate wrongdoing such as tax fraud, however, they may launch a more serious investigation to be conducted by the HMRC Fraud Investigation Service, which could potentially result in criminal charges.
What should I do if I’m the subject of civil tax investigations?
If you feel that you are being unfairly targeted by a tax inspector, you may argue against HMRC’s reasoning to investigate your tax affairs. If, however, you believe that an investigation could throw up some more complicated tax issues than a small amount of underpaid tax, it is essential to employ the services of a tax investigation expert who will get to the bottom of any anomalies, establish your actual tax liability enabling you to make an accurate voluntary disclosure, and defend you against accusations of serious wrongdoing.
What kind of tax cases has Branch Austin McCormick dealt with?
Branch Austin McCormick has dealt with a wide range of tax investigation issues and has a wealth of experience when it comes to offering specialist tax investigation advice. Some of the tax investigation cases we’ve dealt with include:
- Full tax investigations
- PAYE investigations
- Civil and criminal tax fraud tribunal and court proceedings
- Information exchange, treaty disputes and other cross-border issues
- Prevention of liabilities in connection with corporate criminal tax offences and related penalty regimes
- Tax-related professional negligence and mis-selling claims
- Tax warranty, indemnity claims and other commercial tax disputes
- Third-party compliance with tax investigations and penalty regimes
- Judicial Review and other challenges to HMRC’s powers or decisions
How can Branch Austin McCormick help with tax investigations?
Our lawyers have extensive experience when it comes to all aspects of tax law meaning that whether you’re just confused about a potential tax investigation or may be facing more serious problems, we can offer expert advice on what to do in any given situation. While we can defend you against any unfair questioning by HMRC, we usually work to resolve tax disputes through proactive cooperation and engagement with HMRC, resulting in a constructive working relationship, enabling us to deliver positive results for our clients. Where cases are not capable of being dismissed, we will seek early settlement options and we often achieve significant penalty reductions. As well as our solicitors, we work with accountants and tax investigation specialists to ensure that you always have a solid team of professionals working in your interest.
What is Branch Austin McCormick’s tax investigation service?
Resolving issues surrounding a tax investigation can be an expensive process as, in addition to solicitors’ fees, you may also need to cover the professional costs of accountants and other specialists. This is why Branch Austin McCormick’s tax investigation service can act as a cost effective insurance policy against expensive tax investigations. This subscription service means that should you be facing into an investigation by HMRC, you’ll always have one of our expert tax consultants on hand to advise and defend you.
Why choose Branch Austin McCormick?
We don’t judge; we get the job done. In working with a smaller, boutique law firm such as Branch Austin McCormick, clients are able to forge a strong, personal relationship with the lawyer looking after their case meaning that they know that that solicitor always has a vested interest in offering the best advice and fighting for their interests. As well as offering a more personalised service though, our experience when it comes to tax law and tax investigations by HMRC is extensive, while our tax investigation service gives our clients much greater confidence and peace of mind when it comes to tax enquiries. Because of our experience in dealing with tax and financial matters, even if you aren’t the subject of a tax investigation, we’re well placed to offer many kinds personal financial advice and to help you plan for the future.