United Kingdom

Crown Dependencies Disclosure Facilities 

Each of the Governments in the Isle of Man, Guernsey and Jersey have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with HMRC which provide for separate voluntary disclosure facilities (the Facilities), that HMRC will make available to UK taxpayers from 6 April 2013 to 30 September 2016.   The Facilities are identical and they also have a number of similarities, but some important differences, to the UK’s Liechtenstein Disclosure Facility (LDF).  The Facilities provide for taxpayers with a financial interest in the Crown Dependencies to come forward and regularise their affairs in a controlled manner.

 

Tax information from the Crown Dependencies will be exchanged with the UK through Inter Governmental Agreements (IGAs), with alternative reporting arrangements for non-domiciled UK tax residents.

 

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Key aspects of the Crown Dependency Disclosure Facilities

Below are the key aspects of the Facilities, and a table comparing the key aspects to the LDF:

 

  • Disclosure schemes are available 6 April 2013 to 30 September 2016.
  • Need to have an asset in the territory (e.g. bank account, interest in company, trust etc.) and be UK resident at some point between 6 April 1999 and 31 December 2013 (asset and residence do not need to be coterminous).
  • Tax liabilities due from 6 April 1999 only.
  • Fixed penalties at lower rates for most years (10% for years to 5 April 2008).
  • No guaranteed immunity from prosecution although HMRC has said unlikely.
  • There will be an identification procedure for the Financial Institutions to go through in order to identify and notify UK clients.  The first notification to clients had to be completed by 31 December 2013 with the second due in the six months to 30 September 2016.
  • Bespoke service available from HMRC, including "no-names" enquiries.
  • Once the exchange of information between the Isle of Man, Jersey, Guernsey and the UK starts, penalties will be up to 200% of the tax if irregularities are discovered by HMRC.
  • In the LDF accounts opened through a UK branch or agency do not qualify for the special terms (limitation to 1999 and the fixed penalties).  In the Facilities, Isle of Man, Jersey and Guernsey accounts opened through a UK branch or agency do qualify for the special terms (limitation to 1999 and the fixed penalties), although accounts held elsewhere outside the territory in point and the UK do not.
  • All previous/ongoing HMRC in depth investigations or contact by, or participation in, previous HMRC disclosure schemes, or if a relevant person within the terms of the UK Swiss Agreement - excludes (or restricts)the use of Facilities.  In the LDF this only applies if there is a criminal or Code of Practice 9 (fraud) investigation.
  • Payments on account are expected early in the process.
  • Tax deducted under the European Union Savings Tax Directive is deductible against liabilities due under the Facilities.
  • HMRC aim to finalise within 9 months from the application to participate in the facilities.

 

In cases where the CDDF is beneficial the Liechtenstein Disclosure Facility (LDF) also needs to be considered – additional benefits available under the LDF include the use of the Composite Rate Option - a simplified method of computing tax liabilities which can lead to a reduction in the tax cost and in the right circumstances can eliminate Inheritance Tax. 

 

LDF 

Crown Dependencies

Normal practice

Timescale

Available between 1 September 2009 and 5 April 2016

Available between 6 April 2013 and 30 September 2016.  Must contact "relevant persons" by 31/12/2013 to advise of the facility. 

 

Who 

Any person with UK tax liability (includes offshore trustees)

UK tax resident - natural or legal person.  NB: not offshore trustees.

Any person with UK tax liability

Periods covered 

6 April 1999 onwards including Inheritance Tax

6 April 1999 onwards including Inheritance Tax

20 years for most taxes. Unlimited for Inheritance tax liabilities.

Guaranteed immunity from prosecution 

Yes, provided the funds are not derived from wider criminality (i.e. something other than tax evasion)

No - although unlikely

No

Ability to speak to HMRC on a "no-names" basis prior to making a disclosure

Yes

Yes

No

Able to participate if already under investigation by HMRC

Yes, unless already under investigation for serious tax fraud (Code of Practice 9) or criminal investigation has already started

No, if subject of a criminal or “’in depth” civil investigation at 5 April 2013. Also, will not get full beneficial terms if a relevant person under UK Swiss Agreement, contacted or participated in previous disclosures regimes (ODF/NDO) or previously been subject to an “in depth” investigation

 

Penalty on unpaid tax (general rules)

10% to 5 April 2009 and 20% or 30% for 2009/10 and 2010/11.  Based on jurisdiction from April 2011.

10% to 5 April 2008 and 20% for 2008/09 to 2010/11.  Based on jurisdiction from April 2011.

Up to 100% to 5 April 2011. 100%/150% / 200% from  April 2011.  Subject to behavioural reductions.

Able to calculate tax liability using a composite rate of tax

Yes, up to 5 April 2009.  Single Charge Rate for 2010/11 for Liechtenstein assets held at 1/9/2009

No

No

Assets located in jurisdiction

20% of undisclosed offshore assets in disclosure must be in Liechtenstein bank account to participate in the LDF(less for trusts or insurance policies)

An asset held in jurisdiction at some point between 6 April 1999 and 31 December 2013

No

Contact

Derek Scott

Derek Scott
+44 (0)20 7311 2618

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