Whilst I would not characterise all of the approx. 1,140 tax reliefs on offer in UK legislation as "schemes" it is indisputable that the complexities of the tax system cause real issues for organisations grappling with the new corporate criminal offence on the facilitation of tax evasion.
The new rules focus on preventing the facilitation of tax evasion, which is illegal; rather than compliant tax planning , which is not.
But for organisations responding to this, articulating their appetite for the latter, whilst ensuring vigilance in preventing facilitation of the former, can be a challenge.
So might the outcome of criminalising the facilitation of corporate tax evasion actually be a substantial reduction in the business appetite for complex tax avoidance? That seems very possible.
There are still tax reliefs for the British film industry and they make up just a few of the estimated 1,140 schemes offered by HMRC on everything from plant and machinery to pension saving.