Depending upon the facts, if you do need to regularise your past tax compliance, you can use the Worldwide Disclosure Facility (WDF). The WDF is an on-line portal allowing direct access to HMRC although it is not particularly intuitive. I believe a better way is to have a meaningful face to face dialogue whenever it is possible.
When is the Worldwide Disclosure Facility used?
The WDF is used where the tax liability relates to an offshore matter. The WDF opened on 5 September 2016. This followed the closure of all other offshore disclosure facilities on 31 December 2105.
What is an offshore matter?
An offshore matter includes unpaid or omitted tax relating to:
- income arising from a source in a territory outside the UK;
- assets situated or held in a territory outside the UK;
- activities carried on wholly or mainly in a territory outside the UK;
- anything having effect as if it were income, assets or activities of a kind described above.
How does the WDF work?
Any taxpayer can apply to participate in the WDF through the Digital Disclosure Service as an individual, about their:
- own tax affairs
- company’s tax affairs, which includes where they’re a director or company secretary
The WDF can be used on behalf of somebody else. An Executor, for example, can act on behalf of somebody who has died.
The WDF allows the taxpayer to make a disclosure, calculate the tax, interest and penalty due. The taxpayer has to self assess the amount of penalty. Most taxpayers overestimate the amount of penalty due.
Help is at hand
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