Skip to main content

Tax Avoidance: Suicide

Question for Treasury

UIN 133675, tabled on 26 January 2023

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will conduct a review of the potential effect of the Loan Charge on instances of the suicides in the UK.

Answered on

31 January 2023

The Loan Charge was introduced to draw a line under the historic use of disguised remuneration (DR) schemes which paid income in the form of loans via third parties, often offshore trusts.

When announced at Budget 2016, the Loan Charge formed part of a package estimated to yield more than £3.2 billion over five years. The forecast was last revised at Spring Statement 2022, with the latest estimated overall Exchequer yield of £3.4 billion for the entire package, which includes the Loan Charge.

There has already been an independent review of the Loan Charge. The Independent Loan Charge Review, led by Lord Morse, assessed the impact of the policy on affected taxpayers. The Government accepted all but one of the Review’s 20 recommendations and changes resulting from the review have reduced the Exchequer yield by an estimated £620 million.

Any loss of life is a tragedy, and HMRC takes issues relating to loss of life or serious injury extremely seriously. HMRC has made ten referrals to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) in relation to individuals who have sadly taken their lives and have used DR schemes. In the eight concluded cases, the investigations found no evidence of misconduct by any HMRC officer. Individuals affected by the Loan Charge are supported by HMRC’s Extra Support teams. These are teams of specialist trained advisors who, where appropriate, signpost taxpayers to specialist Voluntary and Community organisations. To further strengthen the support offered to taxpayers, HMRC and Samaritans are currently working together to deliver an 18-month project.

Answered by

Named day
Named day questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.