God bless the civil service

#4
He hasn't just gone 'elsewhere'. He's gone to the accountants who work for the people he let off billions in taxes.
Hey, he's only doing one day a week, and he isn't going to do anything that might help to mitigate corporations UK tax exposure, so that's alright then...if he maintains the quality of expertise he gave to HMRC will be out of deficit within 2 years, so doubles all round!
 
#6
Disappointing but not unexpected.
 
#9
Thank God the British civil service is free from the bribery and corruption that is such a feature of third world bureaucracy!
 
#10
"Introduce a special Tax Levy for Civil Servants who leave and go elsewhere. A punitive one. 99%."

Indeed. Lets extend it to ex military personnel who leave the Service and within days find themselves 'consulting' for a variety of organisations which are interested in winning UK defence / HM Govt business. What possible problem could there be in this happening?
 
#12
The Italians do 'bustarella'; the British do nothing so crude. They are 'good eggs' who are 'one of us' and 'know what side they are on', and when they retire from public service, they get their payback. Nothing that constitutes an actual crime, but favours are returned later; call it 'deferred gratification' if you like.
 

Bouillabaisse

LE
Book Reviewer
#13
"Introduce a special Tax Levy for Civil Servants who leave and go elsewhere. A punitive one. 99%."

Indeed. Lets extend it to ex military personnel who leave the Service and within days find themselves 'consulting' for a variety of organisations which are interested in winning UK defence / HM Govt business. What possible problem could there be in this happening?
Sod consulting. What about those of us who've left the military in the past and got nice jobs in the defence industry? If you banned that half the people I work with would be out of work.
 
#14
Introduce a special Tax Levy for Civil Servants who leave and go elsewhere. A punitive one. 99%. :)
Why should his or any other civil servant's rights to employment be restricted anymore than necessary to protect immediate conflicts of interest? Which, in this case has been done; restrictions have been placed on what he can work on. Otherwise, he is no different from any other 62 year old who has come to the end of his employment contract; he has skills to offer, but is unlikely to get full time work. His specific skills are in tax accounting; why wouldn't a big four pick him up?

I'm not convinced by the media frenzy over him cutting deals with big corporates either; no-one has come up with a reason why Vodafone and Goldman's owed more tax and much of the reporting and hysteria is plain wrong; CT is paid on profits, not revenue or turnover. Maybe, just maybe, by cutting a deal, he extracted more tax than was otherwise due. Judgement reserved for me.
 

Wordsmith

LE
Book Reviewer
#16
There used to be a rule that civil servants could only go and work for companies which they directly dealt with 2 years after they left the civil service. This was to prevent obvious conflicts of interest. That rule has been gradually eroded. It it were reinstated, half the problems of the 'revolving door' would go away.

Wordsmith
 
#17
There used to be a rule that civil servants could only go and work for companies which they directly dealt with 2 years after they left the civil service. This was to prevent obvious conflicts of interest. That rule has been gradually eroded. It it were reinstated, half the problems of the 'revolving door' would go away.

Wordsmith
It still exists. Nobody enforces it. These committees say (with a straight face) "You can work for this company, but you can't advise them on tax". As if they're going to get transcripts of the secret discussions ex-Civil Servants have with their new employers.
 
#18
I'm not convinced by the media frenzy over him cutting deals with big corporates either; no-one has come up with a reason why Vodafone and Goldman's owed more tax and much of the reporting and hysteria is plain wrong; CT is paid on profits, not revenue or turnover. Maybe, just maybe, by cutting a deal, he extracted more tax than was otherwise due. Judgement reserved for me.
Try reading Private Eye, which has been reporting on this for years. Private Eye, althought sometimes wrong, was pretty damn sure that HRMC's lawyers were racking up practise hours on their Victory Dance when the case against Vodafone was heard in court. Then someone decided to ignore British tax law and offer a deal that was pretty much a free blowjob behind the bike sheds
 
#19
I'm not convinced by the media frenzy over him cutting deals with big corporates either; no-one has come up with a reason why Vodafone and Goldman's owed more tax and much of the reporting and hysteria is plain wrong; CT is paid on profits, not revenue or turnover. Maybe, just maybe, by cutting a deal, he extracted more tax than was otherwise due. Judgement reserved for me.
Oddly enough, the High Court Judge thankfully did not employ your logic when he ruled on the legality of one of Harnett's "deals".

He did not extract more tax than was otherwise due. He explicitly breached his own guidelines. He did not wait for departmental lawyers to sign off on the deal. He then overruled them when they vetoed it.

http://www.judiciary.gov.uk/Resources/JCO/Documents/Judgments/uk-uncut-v-hmrc-16052013.pdf

But in our cosy system of British justice, he did nothing unlawful.
 
#20
Oddly enough, the High Court Judge thankfully did not employ your logic when he ruled on the legality of one of Harnett's "deals".
The judge ruled on the legality of the deal; he did not rule on the whether the amount of tax owed was more or less than actually paid. The issue with Vodafone is similar; when negotiating, HMRC acted outside of their powers by taking estimated profits into account.

I am not saying either company paid more or less than their correct tax, just that the correct tax has never been tested anywhere, let alone in front of a judge. These were long running tax disputes; both dating back over 10 years. If HMRC were sure they were right, why didn't they let it go to court? One could take the view that, by cutting deals, Harnett and co deliberately avoided HMRC being challenged in court over their assessments.

My point remains; we rely on journalists and blog reports on this, very few of whom get corporate taxation. The vast majority of reports make glaring errors regarding how CT is paid; even members of the Treasury Select Committee get it wrong.

Overall, we must have a staggeringly stupid tax code and ridiculous rates if a very successful global British company that pays 2.3Bn of corporation tax globally quite legitimately pays none in the UK.
 

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