Business

Metal dealers come under tax scrutiny by HMRC

HMRC forms
Image caption Five different taskforces have been set up by the UK tax authority

Scrap metal dealers in Scotland and landlords in Wales are among those being put under the microscope by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

The UK tax authority has announced five sectors that it is planning to target to ensure businesses are paying tax.

This also includes fast food outlets in Scotland and builders in the north-west of England.

Previous campaigns by HMRC have targeted dentists and, most recently, those who own property overseas.

Campaign

HMRC staff will be seeking out scrap metal dealers in Scotland who suppress their income or inflate their expenditure to evade tax.

"We will not tolerate those who break the rules," said David Gauke, the Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury.

"This taskforce will come down hard on scrap metal dealers and their customers or suppliers who have chosen to break the rules or deliberately evade the tax they should be paying. This is just the start."

The same issue will be studied among self-employed, or small business, builders in the north-west of England and North Wales.

Taxpayers failing to submit their tax returns in the south-east of England will be targeted, as will landlords owning three or more properties but not paying enough tax in the north-west of England or North Wales.

The taskforces aim to flood a particular sector in short bursts to ensure that tax is being paid.

It is part of a campaign to seek £7bn of extra income each year for the government by 2014-15 by tackling tax evasion, avoidance and fraud.

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