What are HMRC offences in the UK? To understand that, you first need to have a basic understanding of the HMRC. The HMRC stands for Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs. It is, thus, a part of the UK Government as a non-ministerial department. Its major role is to ensure that all taxes are collected, national insurance numbers are issued, certain state support payments are made, and other administrative work related to regulatory regimes such as the minimum wage in the UK is decided and maintained.

Therefore, HMRC offences pertain mostly to tax evasions for individuals and companies. This article gives you a brief overview of what these offences are, and it explains what you must do if you are ever found making these offences.

HMRC Offences in the UK – An Overview

HMRC offences are criminal and civil offences. Therefore, there are two types of HMRC investigation officers: civil fraud investigators and criminal investigators. Civil fraud investigators are typically deployed during certain circumstances as a cost-effective option. Criminal investigation officers handle more severe cases of criminal activity. The use of these investigators also acts as a means of deterrence for others who may consider such criminal activity that warrants the attention of the HMRC.

It’s important to note that the HMRC will not consider civil fraud investigators for two specific types of fiscal offences:

  • Organised Tax Credit fraud
  • ‘Bogus’ VAT registration payment

The criminal investigation officers handle the aforementioned fiscal offences. The criminal investigation officers are also considered over their civil fraud counterparts for the following circumstances pertaining to HMRC offences in the UK:

  • Systematic tax frauds or attacking the tax system by organised crime units, indicating a severe threat to the tax base
  • Perpetrators have committed repeated offences or are guilty of prior civil action
  • The use of forged or false documents
  • Money laundering with professionals, such as solicitors, accountants, or advisors, using means to hide the money
  • Situations that are suspected of having deception, deliberate concealment, corruption, or conspiracy
  • Providing materially false documentation or making materially false statements during and about a civil investigation
  • The misuse, unlawful destruction, or theft of HMRC documentation
  • Threats to, assaults on, or impersonations of officials of the HMRC

The list above is not exhaustive. Thus, there are other situations in which criminal investigators are used to handle certain HMRC offences in the UK over civil fraud investigators. That is precisely why you will need experienced solicitors to handle your case if you are convicted of any HMRC offences.

What to Do If You Have Committed HMRC Offences in the UK

HMRC offences can be extremely severe, especially if the criminal investigation division is involved. As mentioned above, you must hire a group of solicitors who are well-versed with the nuances and issues regarding HMRC offences. They can guide you with the appropriate legal action to fight your case effectively.