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Why tension is good for you

The job of a tax adviser is to advise and represent their client. The job of HMRC is to collect tax revenue according to the rule of law as laid down by Parliament.

It is useful to remind ourselves of these two facts when considering the relationship between the tax profession and the tax authorities.

I certainly ruffled a few feathers with my speech at the CIOT’s AGM on 17 May in which I made some fairly sharp criticism of HMRC and called for a return to the ‘healthy tension’ between HMRC and the tax profession which existed 10–20 years ago. But I was only speaking from my experience as a practitioner – and reflecting what fellow...

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