The Powers of HMRC: Treating Taxpayers Fairly
Economic Affairs Committee

4th Report of Session 2017-19 - published 4 December 2018 - HL Paper 242


Summary of conclusions and recommendations

Chapter 1: Introduction

Chapter 2: The evolution of HMRC’s powers

The Powers Review

Design principles for the modernised tax administration

Box 1: Design principles for HMRC powers identified in the Powers Review

Powers added since 2012

A tougher approach to tax avoidance and evasion

The new balance of powers

Chapter 3: Proposed new powers

Offshore time limits

HMRC’s civil information powers

Common themes

Chapter 4: The 2019 loan charge

The loan charge

Box 2: The loan charge 2019: a case study

Issues with the loan charge

Box 3: Interest and penalties

The intended target?

Chapter 5: Taxpayer safeguards and access to justice

Box 4: Taxpayers’ route of recourse

Rights of appeal

Penalties for appeal

Judicial review

Statutory review

Naming and shaming

Chapter 6: The tax policy process


Targeting the legislation


Chapter 7: HMRC’s changing culture

Inquiry evidence

The Adjudicator’s perspective

The Charter Committee

HMRC’s perspective

Chapter 8: Powers Review principles revisited

The continued importance of the principles

Pressures on the principles—HMRC resources

New principles for a digital age?

New principles

Monitoring compliance with the principles

Chapter 9: Reviewing HMRC’s powers and accountability

Updating the Powers Review

Broadening HMRC’s accountability

Box 5: Structure of HMRC’s accountability and oversight

A permanent Consultative Committee

Appendix 1: List of Members and declarations of interest

Appendix 2: List of witnesses

Appendix 3: Private roundtable meeting

Appendix 4: Call for evidence

Appendix 5: Examples of representations on the loan charge

Appendix 6: Abbreviations

Evidence is published online at and available for inspection at the Parliamentary Archives (020 7219 3074).

Q in footnotes refers to a question in oral evidence.

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