What should you do if you haven’t declared all of your business income?
If you haven’t declared all of your business income you should think about doing so right away. No one wants to pay tax, but disguising income is difficult and has been made even more difficult these days, thanks to big data. So the options are simple: either declare all income not taxed at source always and never have to worry about getting caught out, or if you’ve failed to declare all income then take advantage of the HMRC Card Transaction Programme now!
The HMRC Card Transaction Programme gives individuals, sole traders, freelancers, landlords, and small businesses, anyone who hasn’t reflected all income through card transactions in a tax return, a chance to come clean, to update their affairs, and benefit from better terms for repayment - possibly lower fines and penalties—than they would if caught out red-handed.
Since credit card companies agreed to give HMRC information relating to card payments as part of the government’s drive to cut down on tax evasion and fraud, all data about card transactions is available to HMRC from the companies that process them.
HMRC has access to other sources of data as well, from PayPal and currency exchange services to the Land Registry, as part of its “Connect” software programme. And, although HMRC insists that this has no implications for personal privacy, I wouldn’t bank on that! Because the Connect software is exactly what it says on the tin and it’s about making connections. Thus if you’re buying fast cars and houses in Surrey, the income you declare and pay tax on will need to add up to the expenditure associated with your high-flying lifestyle.
Remember, all income not taxed at source needs to be declared, irrespective of how the payment is received, whether bank transfer, cheque, cash, credit card, debit card, whatever.
Anyone not declaring income should brace themselves!
It’s not worth being a tax evader. Tax evasion is illegal, but an accountant will lower your taxes legally.
So, if you’ve failed to register for self-assessment or failed to declare all income, make a voluntary disclosure via HMRC Card Transaction Programme to make a voluntary disclosure.
To read more about the Card Transaction Programme visit https://www.gov.uk/guidance/tell-hmrc-about-your-credit-and-debit-card-transactions or phone 0300 123 9272, during business hours Monday–Friday.