Legal Business

Market Report: Tax Litigation – Introducing the hard line

Post Brexit, HMRC is renewing its litigation focus on corporate tax evasion, enhanced by new powers to investigate corporate criminal offences. Dominic Carman reports

Like stargazing through a telescope, tax disputes look back in time. The typical gestation period between issues first catching HMRC’s attention and a dispute reaching court can take up to five years, sometimes longer. Nick Skerrett (pictured), head of contentious tax at Simmons & Simmons, says there has been a maturation of the governance processes within HMRC. ‘It is starting to bed down and HMRC has become more adept in its approach to working out those cases that it ultimately wants to come before the courts from those that it does not,’ he says.