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HMRC promises “many more” tax investigations as it targets Euro Pacific Bank

HMRC promises “many more” tax investigations as it targets Euro Pacific Bank

The establishment of the Joint Chiefs of Global Tax Enforcement (or the J5 for short) in 2018 brought together tax enforcement authorities from the UK, Australia, Canada, the US and the Netherlands.  Its objective remains the tackling of serious international tax fraud.

HMRC, together with its partners, has been investigating Euro Pacific Bank for over two years now in relation to suspected tax evasion and money laundering.  The latest developments have led to the complete suspension of the bank’s operations.

It is understood that HMRC now has the details of hundreds of UK customers linked to the Puerto Rican bank and in-depth investigations into potential tax evasion are very likely to be in prospect.  Therefore, we would strongly recommend any such account holders give serious consideration to making spontaneous and voluntary disclosures of any undeclared income or gains before HMRC closes the net and initiates enquiries and / or more serious investigations of its own. 

The Worldwide Disclosure Facility (“WDF”) remains available to UK tax residents who wish to correct any tax irregularities in their affairs where overseas income or gains remain undeclared.  Importantly, users of the WDF can secure significantly lower tax geared penalties if they approach HMRC before the dreaded letter comes through their letter boxes.  Please contact Trident Tax for a no obligation discussion if you believe you may be affected by these latest developments.