HMRC’s consultation on preventing abuse of R&D tax relief for SMEs, which closes on 28 August, must “balance the fight against abuse with the right support for start-ups”, MHA MacIntyre Hudson has said.
Jay Bhatti, research and development tax manager at the firm, said current HMRC proposals “fail to consider” the nuances of operations within smaller companies, which often have major research outlays, but a very low wage spend.
He added that a key aspect is to limit Cash Credit available from R&D relief to three times PAYE and national insurance liability, as this risks “stifling” the growth and development of the small entrepreneurial businesses that drive the UK economy.
The proposals aim to prevent overseas companies using UK shell companies to disproportionately benefit from R&D tax reliefs. Bhatti said while fraud must “obviously be addressed”, he noted that a blanket approach is “completely inappropriate”.
Downing Street has taken control of the upcoming review of gambling legislation, due to be launched within weeks, amid a growing appetite for sweeping reform of the industry from Boris Johnson and his closest advisers.
The Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) is expected to kick off the long-awaited review this autumn but well-placed sources said Boris Johnson and his closest advisers were now steering the plans.
“The PM just sees it as people being exploited and it’s not him,” said one MP with intimate knowledge of discussions within Whitehall.
It is understood that Johnson’s closest adviser Dominic Cummings and Munira Mirza – director of the No10 policy unit – have both taken a personal interest in a push to overhaul the 2005 Gambling Act.
The legislation, introduced under Tony Blair, liberalised regulation of the sector, giving the UK some of the most relaxed gambling laws among major