The Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT) has submitted its response to HM Revenue & Customs’ consultation documents on ‘A new Charter for HMRC and its customers’. The CIOT strongly supports the idea of a charter and sees it as a necessary and important complement to the ongoing review of HMRC Powers. The CIOT firmly believes that the Charter must be founded in statute, so that it has a proper basis.
Nick Goulding, CIOT President, said: “With the extensive modernisation and extension of HMRC’s powers, taxpayers need a clear, accessible expression of their rights as a key part of the balancing safeguards. And for the Charter to work, it needs to be founded – to have its vires – in legislation.”
The CIOT considers that a charter has the potential to play an important role in the way the tax system in the UK is run by helping people understand their rights and responsibilities and to cement principles such as certainty, fairness and openness. It has the potential to be of benefit not only to all those who interact with HMRC but also to HMRC staff. The Charter needs to be a living document that HMRC – with guidance from a Steering Group – develop and keep up to date. It also needs to be accessible and easily understood by the unrepresented – so it must not be all in statute.
Nick Goulding continued: “We are calling on the Government to press forward with the Charter by including an enabling clause in the Finance Bill in 2009.”
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Notes to Editors
To read the CIOT submission please click here.