HMRC harden on Pharmaceuticals

Ir35 GSK Offpayroll working rules

IR35 GSK off-payroll working rules

HMRC is targeting IR35 tax avoidance in the Pharmaceuticals industry, employing what some would consider rather furtive tactics.

Over 1,500 contractors at GSK have received a letter alluding to non-compliance with IR35 rules. The letter states:

‘It is our view that the contract between your PSC and GlaxoSmithKline Plc comes under the off-payroll working rules [IR35]

The letter goes on to request information and a response by a deadline.

All sounds very formal, except for the fact this request has no express legal underpinning at all and is at best a campaign to seek information.

This blatant deception and targeted harassment has caused concern and cost for many.

It is disturbing letters of this nature are being sent simply to provoke a response.

The reality is:

  1. There is no requirement to respond to the letter, regardless of deadline
  2. The letter is NOT a formal notification of a compliance review
  3. The letter is NOT a formal notification of an enquiry on the company
  4. The letter is NOT a request for information that has legal standing

The letter states the company ‘may’ be subject to a compliance review, however this is true of all small businesses and limited companies. HMRC may open a compliance review at any time, against any company, to ensure compliance with tax obligations.

If you have received a letter of this nature or would simply like to discuss IR35 and the changing landscape for contractors, call us today to arrange a free no obligation consultation.

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