High Net Wealth – Fee Protection Service

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Fee Protection Service

High Net Worth Individuals (HNWIs) with a net worth > £10m attract particular attention from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).

The High Net Worth Unit (HNWU) monitors the 8,500 richest individuals in the UK, who fit into this wealth bracket.

The National Audit Office recently concluded a thorough review of the HNWU and found that:

  • During 2015/16, a third of HNWIs were under enquiry at any one time, with an average of four issues being examined per taxpayer.
  • Enquiries into HNWIs take a long time to resolve because of their complexity. 6,000 issues under enquiry have been open for 18 months or more; 4,000 of which have been open for more than three years.
  • Between 2012/13 and 2015/16, the HNWU issued 850 penalties to high net worth individuals totalling £9m, with an average value of £10,000 per penalty.

Wealthy individuals within the UK have never been under such intense scrutiny.

As these figures demonstrate, an enquiry is a real and genuine threat. The professional fees required to provide representation are significant because of the length of time required to secure settlement with HMRC.

Our Fee Protection Service is designed to provide our wealthy clients with protection against the fees arising from professional representation during such an enquiry. If you are chosen for review, we will we will be able to:

  • Respond to HMRC on your behalf.
  • Deal with all correspondence.
  • Prepare and defend your case.
  • Negotiate the best possible outcome for you.

Last year HMRC delivered a record £416m from pursuing HNWIs and this figure is likely to increase as the HNWU recruits more staff.

Personal tax investigations can often be intrusive and uncomfortable to deal with, but are predominantly time consuming and very expensive. Our Fee Protection Service is the sensible protective measure to take and invest in.

Please contact Sue Stephens, Tax Partner, if you are interested in learning more about this service and the support we provide to our clients.