Kangs Solicitors has acquired high acclaim nationally for successfully representing clients in relation to Revenue and Tax fraud investigations since 1997.
It is anticipated that the level of active HMRC fraud investigations will increase significantly as a result of alleged criminal abuse of the various Government financial support packages provided to individuals and businesses necessitated by the Covid-19 pandemic.
We have experienced a significant increase in HMRC investigations in recent months and this has been in part fuelled by investigations in relation to fraudulent applications relating to the:
- Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (‘the Furlough Scheme’),
- Bounce Back Loan Scheme (‘the BBL Scheme’),
- Eat Out To Help Out Scheme (‘the EOTHO Scheme’).
Hamraj Kang of Kangs Solicitors provides a brief analysis of the current HMRC investigations landscape.
The team is led by Hamraj Kang who is ranked as a ‘star individual’ for financial crime investigations by the leading legal directory Chambers & Partners.
For an initial no obligation discussion, please call our VAT Team at any of our offices detailed below:
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme | Furlough Fraud Defence Solicitors
The Furlough Scheme has been extended on a number of occasions by the Government and it is currently due to end on 30 April 2021.
The Furlough Scheme has greatly assisted a large number of legitimate businesses retain employees and is designed to avoid large scale redundancies.
However, the Furlough Scheme is the subject of fraudulent attacks by others.
We currently represent clients in cases where HMRC is alleging fraudulent misuse of the Furlough Scheme. One such case has been dubbed by HMRC as the largest furlough fraud operation in the country with the overall value of the alleged fraud said to be in excess of £80 million.
In another case, there is an allegation that a significant number of employees have been transferred from one employer to another with the intent to fraudulently take advantage of the Furlough Scheme payments.
We anticipate further investigations and prosecutions being launched by HMRC to satisfy the public desire to pursue those allegedly misappropriating public funds provided to assist the nation during the pandemic crisis.
The Bounce Back Loan Scheme | Kangs HMRC Defence Solicitors
There has been a significant uptake by businesses of the BBL Scheme which provides a maximum loan of £50,000. A loan includes the added attractions that no capital or interest payments are required for the first twelve months and, thereafter, a fixed low interest rate will be charged for the lifetime of that loan.
Due, in part, to the comparative ease with which a BBL can be obtained significant fraudulent activity has occurred which HMRC is now investigating.
The many scenarios that we have encountered include:
- multiple fraudulent applications for BBLs from the same group of persons,
- fraudulent use of the BBL e.g. the loan not being used for the benefit of the business but for personal gain such as acquisition of property or cars,
- hi-jacking of company identity to obtain a BBL with the intent of leaving the innocent company with the BBL liability,
- consultancy services being provided by Organised Crime Groups to assist businesses and individuals fraudulently maximise access to BBLs.
Eat Out To Help Out Scheme | Kangs Vat Investigations Solicitors
Although the EOTHO Scheme is now closed, investigations into alleged abuses of the EOTHO Scheme are only just beginning.
The EOTHO Scheme was designed to assist the hospitality sector recover from the first national lockdown and was operational in the summer of 2020 with many restaurants, bars and hotels participating.
We regularly act for the hospitality sector by providing a range of legal services and our experience has shown that issues being investigated include:
- fraudulent inflation of sales by businesses,
- false purchase and sales invoices being utilised to disguise the true sales turnover,
- capacity issues where many more meals sales have been claimed than could actually have been catered for on the premises
- ‘take away meals’ being accounted for as ‘in-restaurant’ dining sales,
- multiple claims where each course has been accounted for as an entire meal and where multiple discounts have been fraudulent applied.
How Can We Assist? | Kangs HMRC Investigations Solicitors
We are able to assist businesses in relation to a wide range of HMRC issues including:
- Criminal investigations which usually commence with a Dawn Raid
- Interviews Under Caution
- HMRC Tax Investigations
- HMRC VAT Investigations
- HMRC Civil Tax Investigations
- VAT & Tax Assessments
- Tax Appeals & Tribunals
Who Can I Contact? | Kangs HMRC & VAT Fraud Investigation Solicitors
We welcome new enquiries by telephone or email.
Our team of lawyers is available to meet at our offices in London, Birmingham or Manchester or, alternatively, we are happy to arrange an initial no obligation meeting via telephone or video conferencing.
For initial enquires please contact: