4 April 2019
Sir Geoffrey Clifton-Brown speaks in the debate on the 2019 Loan Charge

Speaking in the debate on the 2019 Loan Charge, Sir Geoffrey Clifton-Brown calls on the Government to formalise unofficial advice given to him by a senior HMRC official that settlement for historic liabilities where HMRC no longer has assessing rights are in fact voluntary.

Sir Geoffrey Clifton-Brown

I am grateful to my right hon. Friend for giving way; I know he is short of time. He and the House might be interested in the reply given to me in the Public Accounts Committee by Jim Harra, the second permanent secretary at HMRC. He said:

“Among the disguised remuneration users, there are undoubtedly people who have liabilities for years, where under the normal rules we do not now have assessing rights. In our settlement opportunity, we have asked those people to settle for all years, including the years for which we do not have those assessing rights. If they choose not to do that—I can’t make them settle voluntarily for those years”.

Does my right hon. Friend not think that the Financial Secretary should formalise that tax advice?

Mr Deputy Speaker (Sir Lindsay Hoyle)

May I just warn Members that because of the interventions the time limit will need to go down to five minutes to get everyone in?

Sir Mike Penning

On that basis, Mr Deputy Speaker, I will not give way anymore. It would be right and proper to let colleagues speak, no matter how short their contributions.

My hon. Friend makes a good point.