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This Code guidance replaces the consolidated guidance published in November 2016. The latest version – published in December 2019 - provides clarification on several terms, such as ‘meeting all tax obligations’, ‘genuine commercial activity’, ‘reasonable belief’, and provides new material on purpose tests. It also provides more information on how HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) operates the Governance Protocol, and there is information on how the Code interacts with the senior accounting officer regime, the penalties for enablers of defeated tax avoidance legislation, and the corporate offences for failing to prevent criminal facilitation of tax evasion.
The November 2016 version of the consolidated guidance replaced all existing guidance published between 2009 and 2013. It also included new material on the ‘intentions of Parliament’, the Annual Report, identifying the Code population, the application of the Code to overseas entities, how HMRC will monitor Code compliance and how the Large Business Compliance Strategy applies to banks which have adopted the Code.