Opinion has been split on the merits of a HMRC crackdown on tax-dodging lawyers.
The Lawyer revealed last month how the authorities were targeting the bar after 18 Red Lion Court prosecutor Andrew Marshall told Blackfriars Crown Court that he had a series of cases in the pipeline.
And so it has come to pass.
HMRC is not stopping just at the bar. On Tuesday it announced it is going after “London lawyers”.
The Revenue says the decision is based on intelligence it has gathered, hinting it has enough evidence to launch several investigations.
The accountants are out in force warning lawyers who have concerns to get some advice – and quick.
While the lawyers are puzzled. Why come after us, they ask, we contribute to the national coffers not cheat it. What is the point of this exercise?
The point is that HMRC has reason to believe there are some tax dodgers in the profession and it is under an obligation to investigate. Simple as that.
Elsewhere in litigation this week
- Find out who is battling in France to keep Kate Middleton’s boobs out of the press: Metzner Associés lawyer instructed by Harbottles
- The battle between the Barclay Brothers and Irish property tycoon Patrick McKillen over three major London hotels continues, with costs reaching £20m: See who is angling for a big pay day
- And Professor Richard Moorhead writes about the legal implications of the Hillsborough cover-up while Doughty Street’s Daniel Bennett talks about his experiences on the football ground that eventful day