HMRC Announces Online Traders Are Its Next Target

Michelle Remo, “Big 4″ observer
March 15, 2012 /

KPMG warns that HMRC has launched a campaign targeting people who sell goods and services online for profit.

The campaign is aimed at people using e-marketplaces to buy, sell or swap goods on a regular basis in order to make a profit, but who may not be paying tax on this income.

Paul Harrison, tax partner at KPMG in the UK, said: “Today sees another example of HMRC’s commitment to target groups of people who may not be paying the correct amount of tax at the right time. This time online traders are in the spotlight and the taxman is offering the chance to those ‘trading’ online without paying tax to come forward voluntarily and put their tax affairs in order.

“The reality is that only a small percentage of people using these sites will be classed as trading by HMRC, but the tax they owe could be significant. If you do buy and sell goods online on a regular basis with the aim to make a profit then you should seek advice on your position. The Revenue is offering a ‘fresh start’ for those who come forward in the next three months. Miss this window and it’s likely you’ll face a higher penalty and harsher terms than the ones currently on offer.”

What classes as “trading” online?

HMRC has set up a website with questions to help people decide if they class as an online trader and is offering preferential terms to those who come forward before 14 June 2012.


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