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Comet falls to Earth


lobsterboy Plus
12 14.7k 13 United Kingdom
12 Nov 2012 10:00AM

Quote:Perhaps, but it does seem a bit perverse to attempt to "shame" companies who are in compliance with the law as it stands. A touch hypocritical too, unless the feeling is that we should all volunteer to pay more tax than we are required to by law.

There is a difference between what you are required to pay and what you go out of your way to avoid. Moving head offices to tax havens or following Phillip Greens example is basically just a way of avoiding your responsibilities - no different to a father who moves to another country to avoid paying maintenance AFAICS.

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thewilliam 8 5.8k
12 Nov 2012 10:52AM
The big corporations and wealthy individuals seem to finance our political system and it won't be for altruistic motives.

It's an investment and the pay-back is that the government keeps the tax laws loose enough so that companies and rich individuals can get away with paying very little tax.

He who pays the piper .....
collywobles 12 3.8k 10 United Kingdom
12 Nov 2012 10:55AM
Spot on Lobsterboy, there is a social resposibility to pay your fair share. These companies take all the benefits that our society provide, Policing, Health, Educating our children so they can become their employees, the list is long -- and yet they are deceiptful in avoiding paying their fair share of taxes despite the millions in profit they make.. I avoid companies who are on the list and if everyone else did the same they might rethink their resposibilities.

€olin
brian1208 Plus
13 11.1k 12 United Kingdom
12 Nov 2012 11:04AM

Quote:deceiptful in avoiding paying their fair share of taxes


No, they make use of the tax laws as they are presently configured, deceitful tax avoidance is Tax Evasion which is illegal, tax avoidance is not

Once again, you attack the symptoms of bad tax law not the cause, which are the laws themselves
mikehit 7 8.0k 13 United Kingdom
12 Nov 2012 11:16AM

Quote:I avoid companies who are on the list


So where do you buy your food and clothes from?
Jestertheclown 7 7.3k 249 England
12 Nov 2012 11:27AM

Quote: I avoid companies who are on the list

Then you're throwing money away for no purpose.

I use Am*zon and others because I can buy the things I want more cheaply. I'm not concerned that they're making use of a perfectly legal means of saving themselves a few quid. I'd do precisely the same if the opportunity arose.
And so would 99% of the human race.
brian1208 Plus
13 11.1k 12 United Kingdom
12 Nov 2012 11:31AM
As an example at the individual level:

you have some money you want to save, do you put it into a tax paying savings account or into one which doesn't pay tax, such as an ISA?

If they both pay the same interest rate I know where my money goes and I don't feel the least bit guilty about it Grin
mdpontin Plus
12 6.0k Scotland
12 Nov 2012 12:24PM

Quote:...just a way of avoiding your responsibilities...

Which set of responsibilities? Company directors have a responsibility to their shareholders to maximise return on investment by any legal means at their disposal. As has been mentioned before, the biggest shareholders/investors in major companies are usually financial institutions rather than individuals, including pension funds among others. Everything is interconnected - it's rarely about some so-called "fat cat" trying to squeeze a few more millions out of the system at the expense of ordinary people. Paying out millions in tax which could have been legally avoided makes little commercial sense.

Do I like the thought of UK companies relocating their headquarters overseas for tax reasons? No. But they're perfectly entitled to do so, and no amount of whinging on my part will stop that. If the law can be changed to make this less likely to happen in future, without losing more tax income for the Treasury than it saves by discouraging inward investment, good.


Quote:No, they make use of the tax laws as they are presently configured, deceitful tax avoidance is Tax Evasion which is illegal, tax avoidance is not

Once again, you attack the symptoms of bad tax law not the cause, which are the laws themselves


Exactly.
thewilliam 8 5.8k
12 Nov 2012 12:38PM

Quote:deceiptful in avoiding paying their fair share of taxes

No, they make use of the tax laws as they are presently configured, deceitful tax avoidance is Tax Evasion which is illegal, tax avoidance is not

Once again, you attack the symptoms of bad tax law not the cause, which are the laws themselves



Laws that have been carefully framed so that "our people" can benefit!
strawman 12 22.1k 16 United Kingdom
12 Nov 2012 12:47PM
I think it is the responsibility of the government/tax officials to set the taxes up so they can be gathered correctly. there are definitions in law about what is or is not legal. But when governments spot that the spirit of the law is being broken they should look to update the law.

Individuals and companies are of course free to choose to do what they wish to maximise their income within the law. But individuals are also at liberty to impose their own moral conduct, as long as it is within the law.

So my view is that corp taxes need looking into by tax officials who should be working under guidance from the government on what the objectives of the tax laws are. Many tax laws can be said to be unfair. Some will say high rate tax payers paying into pensions avoiding 40% tax is unfair. While others will state that the tax rate should be set at the family income level not the individual income level, so you get anomalies like child tax credit. Over to our authorities to act, and if individuals choose to take actions to not use such companies it may push them back in line. For example Costa Coffee its not like they are pushing the price down for consumers is it Tongue
Carabosse Plus
13 40.1k 269 England
12 Nov 2012 1:10PM
There has long been a debate about having a general tax avoidance clause in legislation, i.e. if it looks like an attempt to pay less tax by artificial means - e.g. non commercial inter-company transactions - then it is treated as evasion, and thus unlawful.

I recall Osborne saying something about this in the last Budget, but I don't know what became of it. Probably nothing.................. as usual.
brian1208 Plus
13 11.1k 12 United Kingdom
12 Nov 2012 1:55PM
I find it rather typical to hear in today's lunchtime news that senior execs of multinationals have been summoned to a committee of MPs to justify why they are paying "So little Tax".

Surely we should be calling these same MP's to account to find out why they have allowed to tax system to become such a shambles that multinationals and other larger organsiations are not required by law to pay more tax?

Once again, those that cause the problem are wriggling out of their responsibilty by attacking those making perfectly legal use of the current Tax system

Scapegoating is so much easier than addmitting there is a problem and solving it! I despair of our poor bloody country sometimes Sad
lobsterboy Plus
12 14.7k 13 United Kingdom
12 Nov 2012 2:11PM

Quote:There has long been a debate about having a general tax avoidance clause in legislation, i.e. if it looks like an attempt to pay less tax by artificial means - e.g. non commercial inter-company transactions - then it is treated as evasion, and thus unlawful.


That would be the sort of thing we need - I think the US has a similarly law. Though as thewilliam would say, I doubt it will happen as it might not go down well with "our people" Wink
thewilliam 8 5.8k
12 Nov 2012 3:10PM
To get back to the original point of the thread, She-who-must-be-obeyed and I went to our local Comet to see whether they had any nice lap-top deals in their closing down sale. The prices weren't exactly generous and we can do better at Misco.
brian1208 Plus
13 11.1k 12 United Kingdom
12 Nov 2012 3:21PM
The best I've seen so far locally seems to be 10% off, as you say, not exactly generous

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