Guidance

Offshore disclosure facilities: British Crown dependencies

How you could apply, disclose outstanding liabilities, and make payments for your offshore investments and assets in British Crown dependencies. The facilities have now closed for new applications.

British Crown dependencies

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has made disclosure facilities available as part of its commitment with the British Crown dependencies, to cooperate on tax matters.

The British Crown dependencies (Isle of Man, Guernsey and Jersey) disclosure facilities, give eligible UK taxpayers the chance to declare their worldwide income and bring their UK tax affairs up to date quickly and without having to undergo an in depth investigation.

You can use these facilities to make a full disclosure of outstanding liabilities and pay any amount you owe. You must:

  • establish whether you’re eligible
  • decide which facility to use (Guernsey, Jersey, or Isle of Man)
  • make an application

The British Crown disclosure facilities ran from 6 April 2013 until 31 December 2015.

You must have applied before midnight on 31 December 2015.

If you have an outstanding tax liability and you’re eligible you’ll be allowed to limit your disclosure to tax periods ending on or after 6 April 1999 (1 April 1999 for companies) and to restrict any penalties you have to pay within set limits.

The Guernsey, Jersey and Isle of Man governments expect financial intermediaries to contact clients who may be eligible to use the disclosure facility. But it’s your responsibility to make sure you apply to participate within the time limits above. Don’t wait for your financial intermediary to contact you before you do this.

HMRC will give you a decision on your disclosure as soon as possible. They’ll finalise most disclosures within 9 months of your application.

What you should do next

To make a disclosure:

  • establish that you have a tax liability to disclose
  • confirm you’re eligible (ensure your circumstances meet the conditions for using this facility)
  • apply to HMRC to make a disclosure
  • make a payment within 30 days of your application date that accurately reflects the total tax liability of your disclosure
  • fill in and return your disclosure pack to HMRC as soon as possible

Establish tax liability

If you’re not sure if you owe tax you can get help.

Confirm that you’re eligible

You’re not eligible to participate if you:

  • are under criminal investigation on 6 April 2013
  • are under non-criminal in depth investigation on 6 April 2013
  • come under criminal investigation following your application to participate in the specific Crown disclosure facility, but before HMRC has determined your liability to pay outstanding UK tax, interest and penalties

There are also some circumstances that might mean that you’re not eligible for the full terms of the facility. These include circumstances where you:

  • have been the subject of criminal or in depth investigation before
  • are already linked to any alternative HMRC disclosure facility
  • were, on 19 February 2013, a ‘relevant person’ for the purposes of the Swiss/UK Tax Cooperation Agreement

You can get further guidance from the Offshore Disclosure Facility Helpdesk.

Check the detailed guidance and Memorandum of Understanding for each facility:

Apply to make a disclosure

You must have applied before midnight on 31 December 2015.

If you’re eligible to participate, give HMRC an outline of your disclosure. HMRC will give you a unique reference number and tell you which disclosure pack to use. Include your unique reference number when you make your disclosure and on any payments or letters you send to HMRC.

If you need a paper copy of the application form telephone the Offshore Disclosure Facility Helpdesk.

Make your disclosure payment

You must make a payment that accurately reflects the total tax liability of the disclosure. This must be made within 30 days of your disclosure application date. HMRC may withdraw the terms of the disclosure facility and associated benefits if this payment is significantly lower than your actual liability.

Make your disclosure

You must make your disclosure within 6 months of applying. If you think it will take longer, then telephone the Offshore Disclosure Facility Helpdesk as soon as you’ve got your unique reference number.

After you apply, HMRC will tell you which of the following disclosure packs to fill in:

You can also get a paper copy of the disclosure packs by ringing the Offshore Disclosure Facility Helpdesk.

If you aren’t eligible to use a disclosure facility

If you’re not eligible but have UK tax liabilities to disclose, you should still take action to bring your affairs up to date.

If your outstanding tax is linked to the use of overseas accounts or other offshore structures, please contact HMRC’s Offshore Co-ordination Unit:

Telephone: 03000 530 310
Email: ocu.hmrc@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk

Published 16 December 2014
Last updated 1 April 2016 + show all updates
  1. The disclosure facilities have now closed for new applications
  2. Sentence added to the page as a reminder to the closure date of 31 December 2015.
  3. Disclosure facility date changed.
  4. First published.