Government response

Judicial review statement from HMRC

Director General for Business Tax, Jim Harra, welcomes High Court judgment in the judicial review involving UK Uncut and HMRC.

HMRC headquarters building in London

He said:

The High Court’s comprehensive dismissal of UK Uncut’s claim puts to rest the fallacy that HMRC is soft on large businesses. 

HMRC has an exemplary record in relentlessly challenging those who avoid tax. We have recovered £34 billion in additional revenues from large businesses in the last seven years.

The High Court’s judgment confirms what HMRC has always said: that while we made errors in settling the Goldman Sachs dispute, we made the right settlement in the circumstances, and that our decision was both proper and lawful.

This issue has been rigorously and repeatedly scrutinised – by the Public Accounts Committee, by a retired High Court judge on behalf of the National Audit Office and now by the High Court itself.

The public can have confidence in our governance processes, which we have strengthened, providing greater levels of scrutiny, transparency and role separation. 

In its definitive judgment, the High Court has now drawn a line under the Goldman Sachs issue. HMRC can now get on with the critical job of working to ensure that all individuals and companies, big and small, pay the tax they owe to fund the UK’s essential public services.

Notes for editors

  1. Litigation and settlements strategy and alternative dispute resolution guidance * Resolving Tax Disputes - Commentary on the litigation and settlement strategy (PDF) * Resolving Tax Disputes - Practical guidance for HMRC staff on the use of alternative dispute resolution in large or complex cases(PDF)

  2. HMRC Annual Accounts 2010/11 – Comptroller and Auditor General’s Report (PDF)

  3. NAO report on settling large tax disputes (June 2012)

Published 16 May 2013
Last updated 14 August 2014 + show all updates
  1. Removed link to 'HMRC Announcement of New Government Procedures' as the article had been removed, and the source website was no longer available.
  2. First published.