Former members of the military have expressed suicidal thoughts after facing a ‘cruel and unfair’ loan charge, says campaign group Yorkshire News

MP David Davis was the 118th MP to sign a letter warning the prime minister and chancellor that thousands of people are facing bankruptcy due to controversial tax policy.

The Loan Charge Action Group has asked the Prime Minister and Chancellor to “change course” on the loan charge, a policy that has left thousands of people with unexpected tax bills after receiving professional advice.

Last week, Brexit Secretary David Davis became the 118th MP to sign a letter warning the prime minister and chancellor that thousands of people are facing bankruptcy due to the loan charge.

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The open letter, which has been sent on behalf of the Loan Charge & Taxpayer Fairness All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG), states that the loan charge will have a devastating impact on thousands of UK families. Seven suicides were reported to the APPG in the last Parliament.

Labor leader Sir Keir Starmer has also said that the HMRC has “pressing questions to answer” about its handling of the loan charge, in a letter seen by The Yorkshire Post.

Sir Keir has also revealed that he has directed his shadow Treasury ministers to work with loan charge activists to prevent this type of controversy from re-emerging.

The loan fee, announced by the government in 2016, was designed to address tax avoidance schemes in which people receive income in the form of loans that are not repaid to avoid income tax.

Following a public outcry, after thousands of people with modest incomes faced large and unexpected tax bills, the government commissioned a policy review in 2019.

The review has not ended the controversy. The APPG letter calls on the Prime Minister and Chancellor to find a “just resolution” to the saga of loan charges.

Evidence uncovered by the Cross-Party Parliamentary Group on Loan Collection found that, in the vast majority of cases, these deals were not recorded as aggressive tax evasion and were often a condition of employment, especially in the public sector.

A considerable number of people, especially in the public sector, did not know or did not understand that their payment arrangements involved loans, the APPG found.

The Loan Charge Action Group has highlighted the case of a former Barnsley soldier, who said he was left in despair after being affected by the loan charge.

The man, who has asked to remain anonymous, said: “At my lowest point, I was 18 hours away from jumping off the local highway bridge and getting it all done, I only stopped as a result of my accountant explaining to me that everything what I would do is make the problem worse by leaving all these problems for my wife and daughters. “

The man said he settled with HMRC on loans after 2010, forcing him to re-mortgage his home for the next 10 years.

He added, “I had just paid it a year earlier and I also have to pay 50 percent of my disposable income to HMRC every month until I retire.”

He added: ‘I paid a lump sum of £ 25,000 before the September deadline and now I have to pay just under £ 1,000 per month to HMRC and the mortgage payments for the next 10 years and then another eight years of payments to HMRC.. “

Steve Packham, a spokesman for the Loan Charge Action Group, said: “This is yet another case that shows the cruel and unfair reality of the loan charge, yet another example of someone who has considered taking their own life due to a policy that has caused at least seven suicides

“This is not the first former member of the military to have expressed suicidal thoughts due to the collection of the loan.

“There are numerous former veterans facing the loan charge, people who risked their lives serving their country, yet this Government and HMRC are hell-bent on ruining their lives with this policy.

“This is something that should outrage the people and we urge the Minister of the Armed Forces to take an interest and pressure the Prime Minister and the Chancellor to change course before more lives are ruined.”

When questioned by The Yorkshire Post in June, Chancellor Rishi Sunak said the loan charge “had already passed” a lot of scrutiny and had been amended.

In response to concerns about the loan charge, a government spokesperson told The Yorkshire Post: “The loan charge was introduced to ensure that those using covert pay tax evasion schemes paid their fair share of the income tax. income and national insurance contributions. It is only fair that we continue to tackle these types of evasion schemes, as they deprive our public services of vital funding. “

“We encourage anyone who is concerned about paying the loan fee to contact HMRC so they can help. HMRC is committed to working with taxpayers to establish manageable payment plans to spread their tax liability and ensure they are affordable. “

Sir Amyas Morse led an independent review of the policy in 2019 and concluded that it was correct that the loan charge remained in effect, the spokesperson added.

“The Government recognized …

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This notice was published: 2021-09-01 06:34:54

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