Barristers and vets are expected to be the next professionals to come in for scrutiny after HM Revenue & Customs targeted doctors last week.
A report in The Times says GPs and consultants, as well as dentists, who have failed to declare additional sources of income are being given the opportunity to come forward in return for a 90% discount on the usual penalties, under the Revenue's latest "amnesty", launched on Monday.
Under new powers that came into force in April, HMRC can compel third parties to produce information about taxpayers, even where there is no evidence of wrongdoing.
Using these rules, HMRC approached health insurers including Bupa and Sun Life for the names of doctors and dentists who received payments from the insurers for private practice but failed to declare them. It is thought to have obtained the details of 800 consultants. Full story...
POLICYHOLDERS AT EQUITABLE LIFE have accused the Government of dragging its feet a year after it promised to make speedy payments to people hit by the problems at the society, The Telegraph reports.
On January 15 2009, the then Treasury Chief Secretary Yvette Cooper told the House of Commons the Government would make ex-gratia payments to people who had been "disproportionately affected" as "swiftly as possible".
She also appointed former Appeal Court judge Sir John Chadwick to examine cases to decide what ex-gratia payments should be made. But a year later, policyholders still do not know when they will be paid or how much they will receive.
Paul Braithwaite, general secretary of Equitable Members Action Group (Emag), said: "A year on and Yvette Cooper's promises of speed, parroted at regular intervals subsequently by [her successor] Liam Byrne, have been shown to be hollow and cynical. While 15 victims of this scandal die every day, the Government has ensured that Sir John will not even make his recommendations until after the election." Full story...
OUTDATED LAWS AND COMPLEX modern family structures are combining to cause a sharp jump in the number of inheritance disputes reaching the courts, according to The Independent.
The number of cases launched by people unhappy about their inheritance increased 86 per cent in a year, says City law firm Wedlake Bell.
High Court statistics show that claims relating to the provision for dependents soared from 43 in 2007 to 80 in 2008.
"The rise in the number of divorces followed by a second, sometimes third, marriage means that there is a lot of scope for disputes over inheritance," says Fay Copeland, a partner at Wedlake Bell. Full story...
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