Guidance

Corporate offences for failing to prevent criminal facilitation of tax evasion

Use this guide to understand laws introduced to encourage businesses to prevent their representatives helping clients evade tax.

Documents

Details

You can use this guide to understand how these corporate offences work. This includes the types of processes and procedures that your business can put in place to limit the risk of representatives criminally facilitating tax evasion. These are based around 6 guiding principles, which are:

  • risk assessment
  • proportionality of procedures
  • top level commitment
  • due diligence
  • communication and training
  • monitoring and review

The guidance is intended to help your business:

  • understand the offences
  • take a more effective approach to mitigating the risk of your business failing to prevent its representatives from criminally facilitating tax evasion

There are 2 offences, the first applying to the facilitation of UK tax evasion, and the second applying to the facilitation of foreign tax evasion. They were introduced by the Criminal Finances Act 2017.

Consultation

You can read the original consultation and response documents on the introduction of these offences.

Self-reporting

Your business may commit one or more of the offences when a person providing a service for or on your behalf criminally facilitates tax evasion and you did not have procedures in place to prevent it.

It’s possible to report on behalf of a company or partnership if it has failed to prevent the facilitation of tax evasion. This is known as self-reporting.

Find out more about self-reporting and tell HMRC about a company helping people to evade tax.

The guidance and offences took effect from 30 September 2017.

Further information

You should be aware that:

  • from 1 April 2018, the Welsh Revenue Authority may investigate the domestic tax offence in Wales where the tax evaded has been devolved
  • there are no provisions for deferred prosecution agreements in Scotland
Published 6 September 2017
Last updated 18 May 2018 + show all updates
  1. Guidance updated to include information about self-reporting a company or partnership that's facilitated criminal tax evasion.
  2. First published.