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Aberdeen Asset Management plc v HMRC

In Aberdeen Asset Management plc v HMRC (TC00779 – 18 November) a company entered into a tax avoidance scheme devised by an accountancy firm and described as a ‘discounted options scheme’ with the aim of providing additional remuneration to seven of its employees without incurring liability to PAYE or NIC. The scheme involved payments into an employee benefit trust which acquired 15 Isle of Man companies and which purported to settle nominal sums on family benefit trusts for the relevant employees and to grant each of the family benefit trusts share options in one of the Isle of Man companies.

The intention of the scheme was that there would be no UK tax charge on the cash held in the Isle of Man company until the cash was brought back to the UK (for example by dividend or liquidation). HMRC issued determinations under Income...

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