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OTS: new framework for tax simplification review

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Published: 19 Jul 2022 Update History

On 18 July 2022, the Office of Tax Simplification issued a Review of simplification and its Annual Report for 2021-22.

The Office of Tax Simplification (OTS) has suggested a framework of questions which officials and ministers may wish to consider when developing and re-visiting policy. It has also issued its annual report.

Review of simplification

The review outlines following four areas that officials and ministers may wish to consider when developing policy:

  1. Are the rules, their purpose and their consequences easy to understand and predict?
  2. Are the rules and their administration taking advantage of modern developments, including technology?
  3. Is it easy enough to comply with the rules?
  4. Can taxpayers be better supported?

The OTS advises this framework should neither be as simple nor as rigid as a ‘checklist’, but considered proportionately and meaningfully.

Chapter 2 breaks these four areas down into considerations and principles for policymakers. Chapter 3 explains how the OTS will apply these four areas to its work.

The review also explores:

Annual Report 2021-22

The OTS picks up the theme of impact and success in its annual report. This includes government responses to consultations prompted by OTS work, including on net pay pension schemes and modernising stamp duty.

The period also covers:

The annual report also points to future OTS work. This includes research into the tax aspects of hybrid and distance working, with a look at the personal tax return and third-sector taxation issues at a later date.

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