HMRC 'has not fined a single 'enabler' of offshore tax evasion', data reveals

18 Jun 2024

A Freedom of Information (FOI) request has revealed that HMRC has not fined a single 'enabler' of offshore tax evasion in five years.

The revelation comes despite HMRC having landmark powers, which were introduced in 2017, to impose hefty fines.

The data, which was released to the Bureau of Investigative Journalism (TBIJ), suggests that HMRC is failing to target the creators of offshore tax evasion schemes and instead pursues clients of such schemes. According to the FOI request, HMRC has not fined a single partnership or company for enabling tax evasion since the change in the law in 2017.

Commenting on the matter, Dan Neidle, founder of think tank the Tax Policy Associates, said: 'The never-ending stream of new HMRC powers . . . are pointless if the powers aren't then used.'

A spokesperson for HMRC stated: 'We have a strong track record in tackling offshore noncompliance. Since the launch of our 'no safe havens' strategy in 2019, we have secured almost £700 million from offshore initiatives.'