Rather disingenuous of the Guardian to offer a solution to the ever-increasing tax avoidance problem that is totally impractical (Unthinkable? Pay As You’re Paid, 6 October). The situation requires an urgent response, not only because tax avoidance is costing the country billions each year, but also because our “two nation” society is divided into those who pay their correct dues in taxation, because they realise fairness is crucial if civilised society is to be maintained, and those who do everything in their power to pay as little as possible.
The banking culture is not the only one in dire need of change, and the sooner real transparency is a feature of the fiscal system the better. Labour needs to apply itself to the problem, and expose the hypocrisy of those who add to the deficit by avoiding tax and then advocate the imposition of austerity measures on people who do not.
Rewriting the legal definition of a “company” and making it impossible for employees to create their own simply to pay lower taxes also seems sensible, as does ending the awarding of knighthoods and other honours to tax avoiders and evaders. An example needs to be set at the top, by politicians, celebrities, footballers, media-types and such like, if tax avoidance is not to become even more deeply embedded in our divided society.
• In your article MPs target tax arrangement of BBC stars (5 October), you state: “Staff on company payrolls pay up to 50% tax on their salaries and must contribute national insurance. Those paid via personal service companies set up for the recipient’s benefit pay tax at 21% and are exempt from national insurance.”
You are confusing corporation tax and income tax. If the company makes a profit, it pays corporation tax at 21%. No individual can draw from these profits without paying income tax; if they draw a salary from the company they pay income tax and national insurance (NI) in the normal way and at full rates.
Many people who are self-employed use a company because they are receiving income from multiple sources and because they employ researchers or assistants. They then pay themselves a salary with NI and tax deducted.
In a good year, if their company has done well, they may pay themselves a dividend, which would be taxed in the usual way. There is no NI on dividends so this could be seen to be a saving but to suggest that these people are exempt from NI is not true.
• Private companies that generate income primarily through the work of their major shareholders should be obliged to pay employment income to these individuals. Dividend income should be restricted to a reasonable return on capital invested, say 20%.
Guisborough, North Yorkshire
• It’s extremely hypocritical of the Tories to attack the BBC over the “service company” tax arrangements of many of its stars. It was previous Tory administrations that created the present situation when they insisted on “market reforms” at the BBC. This encouraged the laying off of permanent staff and their re-employment via outsourcing arrangements.
Gee Cross, Cheshire
• As a sole trader running a small independent company providing freelance consultancy and advice for public sector organisations, I recently received notification from my professional association that, following a recent visit from HMRC, “We need to ensure that self-employed trainers and associates who undertake work under contract … do so as limited companies and not as private individuals, in terms of their legal status.” It would seem one hand of the government expects self-employed folks in receipt of public funds to pay income tax at 40%, while the other (HMRC) is actively encouraging the self-employed to reduce their tax liabilities to 21%.
• The public accounts committee should be pleased public sector workers are at last taking on standard private sector practice.
Thu, Sep 06, 2012 06:23 – Endeavour Mining Corporation (EDVMF: OTC Link) released their Supplemental Information concerning Amended and Restated Arrangement Agreement. To read the complete report, please visit: https://www.otciq.com/otciq/ajax/showFinancialReportById.pdf?id=90184.
Go here to read the rest: Endeavour Mining Corporation (EDVMF: OTC Link) | Supplemental Information