Gilbert Tax Consultants
Call us now on 0800 734 3333
Here to help, not to judge
Tax Investigation Specialists - Call 0800 734 3333 or email scott.gilbert@gilberttax.co.uk

Services for Accountants

We are a firm that solely deals with handling HMRC disputes and tax investigations.

Gilbert Tax work with a number of accounting practices whether giving tactical advice on dealing with HMRC and not having a direct involvement, or being the lead of the investigation working behind the scenes with the accounting practice.

Some of the common issues Gilbert Tax see when they are not involved from the beginning of an enquiry are:

  • Not checking that the enquiry is started in the allowed time window.
  • Where HMRC claim to have a discovery enquiry (technically there is no such thing) accountants not challenging HMRC on the fundamentals of what they believe they have discovered.
  • Providing information without thinking is it reasonably required and what tax position HMRC are testing.

Requests for information

Most of the requests for information by HMRC are incorrect in some way and providing HMRC with information that they are not entitled to usually leads to lots of unnecessary questions and prolong the enquiry.

Although not a formal information notice the initial request for information should be treated with one. For more detail about information requests and the requirements of the law with regards to these please click here.

HMRC letters

On some occasions the nature of the question and the office who issued the letter can give some insight into what HMRC’s concerns are and the seriousness of the enquiry. For more detail about the different offices and what sort of work they do please click here.

It should always be remembered that HMRC are enquiring into the tax returns or making a visit as they believe that there may be something wrong. HMRC do some detailed risk assessment before an enquiry is raised and even where this research is flawed HMRC believe that it is evidence that there is something wrong with the tax affairs of the client.

Supporting your relationships

It is important at the start of an enquiry both to robustly challenge the client (if there are any errors it is better to bring these to the attention to HMRC at the first opportunity). This can sometimes be difficult due to the accountant-client nature and some clients can attempt to blame the accountant who has done the accounts and prepared the tax return.

Sometimes having the back up of a specialist can mean that the client can have this discussion with someone they do not deal with on a day to day basis and this can make it easier for them to admit to any errors and even if not to discuss in full the process and reassurance that they have someone on their side who is there to protect them and who has detailed experience of HMRC enquires and how to handle them.

This can enhance the relationship between the client and the accountant and also it is our experience that people are more willing to pay for the work done when they have actively agreed to the involvement of a professional and this person asks the accountant to do some of the work.

Handling HMRC

Where people do not have experience of dealing with HMRC on a day to day basis they tend to be reactive and believe that everything HMRC say or ask for is correct. Meetings are agreed to without proper preparation of the client and HMRC take control of the meeting with the client at the end believing that they were trampled over.

It is our experience that it is important that the client understands that a plan is in place and that there is someone there to “protect their back”. Having a specialist supporting the enquiry and helping with the management of the client and HMRC should help the enquiry be contained as far as possible and again help with client relationships.

Free guidance for accountants

Should you have any HMRC issues with regards to your client please give us a call or e mail us and we can discuss the case. Initial discussions are free of charge. We cover practically all manner of HMRC enquiries but more detail of all different aspects, client testimonials and case studies can be found on this website.

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Tax Specialist

Scott Gilbert

Scott joined the Inland Revenue in 1985 and after two years of training moved into tax investigation work. In 1996 he joined Ernst & Young’s tax investigation team was promoted twice in his first four years.

Six years after joining Ernst & Young’s he was appointed to lead the tax investigation team in the North of England. Scott left Ernst & Young in 2004 to start Gilbert Tax in association with Kim Rayfield.

The ethos of Gilbert Tax has remained the same which is to ensure people get affordable top quality representation where they have difficulties with HMRC tax investigations or disputes.

Scott Gilbert is a member of the Chartered Institute of Taxation, passing his tax exams on the first attempt and chaired the Leeds branch between 2002 and 2004. He has extensive experience in tax investigations and defending people who are challenged by HMRC.

Contact Scott on: scott.gilbert@gilberttax.co.uk

Tax Specialist

Kim Rayfield

Kim is a management accountant and deals with the accounting aspects of any enquiry. Kim has also extensive experience of dealing with computer based accounting systems and extracting relevant data.

Kim has undertaken a number of Inland Revenue Investigations mainly relating to Corporate Tax and Income Tax Investigations and assists in detailed analysis of bank and other information in SCO cases.

Kim is an expert in dealing with people who want to make a voluntary disclosure of tax problems where people have failed to notify the Inland Revenue of their self employment (usually as they do not manage to get round to it in the first year and then worry that they will be prosecuted for income tax fraud. These include a number of different professions.

Kim has a keen interest in employment status and the rules relating to sub contractors and has been involved in numerous projects relating to this. She is particularly interested in the new rules which were implemented in April 2007.

Contact Kim on: kim.rayfield@gilberttax.co.uk

Tax Specialist

Craig Tully

Craig worked for HM Revenue & Customs for over ten years before joining a specialist accountancy practice advising professional partnerships. He then moved to one of the largest independent accountancy practices in the North. Craig has an in depth understanding of the tax issues affecting individuals and owner managed business.

Craig joined Gilbert Tax in 2006 as a partner. Craig is a member of the following professional bodies: Association of Taxation Technicians, Federation of Tax Advisors (Fellow), Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, Chartered Insurance Institute.

Craig has extensive experience of tax investigations and other issues. He adopts a non-judgemental approach and considers each tax issue merely a problem to resolve which he does with a mixture of technical ability and insight in to the workings of HMRC.

He is well regarded by accounting practitioners, solicitors, barristers and clients for his practical non-nonsense approach to dealing with HMRC and finding compromises where it is commercially sensible whilst retaining the ability to bring an enquiry to a legally correct conclusion when that offers the best result for the client.

Contact Craig on: craig.tully@gilberttax.co.uk

Tax Specialist

Jay Gilbert

Jay qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1990 working in the Audit Department of BDO Binder Hamlyn. When this firm merged with Arthur Anderson Jay worked as part of the owner managed business team supporting small and medium size businesses.

In 1998 Jay decided to leave the accountancy profession and go to work in industry. Jay has worked for a number of companies from Newspaper groups to property companies and left his role as Financial Director in a property group to join Gilbert Tax (and set up his own accountancy practice) in 2008.

Jay has much experience in dealing with HMRC from the perspective of a business man and has had a number of enquiries from HMRC he has dealt with from a business perspective. He has considerable accountancy and taxation experience and has used this along with his direct knowledge of running a business to help many a client.

Contact Jay on: jay.gilbert@gilberttax.co.uk