HMRC tells Brits to declare overseas earnings in tax evasion crackdown

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ASSET CALL: HMRC’s deadline is September 30. Photo credits: Shutterstock

THE British government has told its taxpayers, including those living abroad, that they must declare their earnings on overseas assets by September 30 or face penalties.

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), the country’s tax collecting authority, said the call was aimed at those who have not informed officials of assets and earnings outside the country. It relates to earnings which come under income, capital gains or inheritance levies.

The deadline follows the passing of new tax rules in Britain which are designed to target those who stash undeclared earnings foreign assets, according to Treasury sources.

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It comes as Britain is set to join the Common Reporting Standard (CRS) system this October which allows a total of 100 countries, including Spain, to share financial accounts data.

Mel Stride, the British government’s Financial Secretary to the Treasury, said he urged anyone who had not already contacted HMRC to declare overseas assets to do so.

“We will continue to relentlessly crack down on those not playing by the rules,” Stride said.

“This new measure will place higher penalties on those who do not contact HMRC and sure their offshore tax liabilities are correct,” he added.

The Treasury said in a statement that earnings from renting out holiday homes and other overseas properties were liable to be taxed.

If a taxpayer notified HMRC by September 30 they would then have 90 days to fully disclose their earnings and pay any tax owed.

“If taxpayers are confident that their affairs are in order they do not need to worry. If anyone is unsure, HMRC recommends they seek advice from a professional tax advisor,” the government department said.

The Treasury added those wishing to declare could do so by using its digital disclosure service, telling an HMRC official or any other method agreed with tax collectors.

Stride said the government had recovered the equivalent of more than €3 billion in undeclared earnings since 2010.

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