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Tax news in brief


Published: 14 May 2024

Highlights from the broader tax news for the week ending 15 May 2024, including: new guidelines for compliance to help with capital allowances claims; suggestions from the IFS on how to reform IHT; and a reminder for exporters on the move to the CDS.

HMRC publishes more guidelines for compliance (GfC)

GfC were announced in November 2021 as part of the review of tax administration for large businesses. They offer HMRC’s view on complex, widely misunderstood or novel risks that can occur across tax regimes. HMRC has published GfC5 to help taxpayers and agents manage risks in making a claim for CAs for expenditure on P&M. The guidelines identify areas where errors are commonly made, and set out a recommended approach for making a claim and keeping records. HMRC states that the guidelines do not represent a change in the law or HMRC policy.

IFS suggests ways in which IHT could be reformed

The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) has published an article on options to make inheritance tax (IHT) fairer and to raise more revenue. The IFS notes that, despite a headline tax rate of 40%, the availability of reliefs and exemptions means that the effective rate of IHT peaks at 25% for estates worth between £3 million and £7.5 million, and declines to just 17% on estates worth £10 million or more. The article considers the possible impact of removing the special treatment of AIM shares, imposing a cap on agricultural and business reliefs and ending the tax-free passing-on of pension pots.

Exporters must move to the Customs Declaration Service

Businesses that export goods from the UK have less than three weeks left to move their export declarations from CHIEF to the Customs Declarations Service (CDS). Export declarations must be submitted through CDS from 4 June 2024. CHIEF will be closed from this date. Exporters not yet registered for CDS can do so here. Businesses already registered for imports do not need to register again for exports.

HMRC publishes VAT tertiary legislation manual

HMRC has published a VAT manual, which includes all VAT tertiary legislation, or “force of law” guidance, in one place. All of the guidance within the manual has previously been published on gov.uk. If you have feedback on anything that might have been missed or the way the manual is structured, please contact Ed Saltmarsh.

HMRC taxpayer education research

HMRC has updated its guidance on genuine HMRC contact to include a new research initiative. Taxpayers may be contacted by HMRC or People for Research to invite them to take part in a focus group to understand how HMRC can improve education for taxpayers. Taking part in the research is voluntary.

International tax round-up

CFE Tax Advisers Europe’s (CFE’s) news round-up for 6 May 2024 includes a summary of the OECD’s report Taxing Wages 2024. The report compares labour costs and the overall tax and benefit position for a number of countries. Key findings picked out by CFE include that effective tax rates on labour incomes rose in a majority of OECD countries.


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