New Clause 2 — Principles of good practice for retrospective taxation legislation
Orders of the Day
John Redwood (Wokingham, Conservative)
My hon. Friend is right and makes an important part of my case. The people I have in mind cannot hire expensive accountants or lawyers for either their personal or their small business affairs. It gives them a greater feeling of injustice because they think that there is law and justice for the very large companies. Those can take the best legal and accountancy advice, and may succeed in winning the case or may have enough cases going forward so that, on the law of averages, they come out of it all right. Law-abiding decent people who run small businesses or who try to put together their savings for retirement do not have that option. Only one case may matter to them, and they will probably lose it. There is the feeling that the Revenue is out to grab as much money as it can from any law-abiding person who advises it that he has a bit of money, rather than the Revenue sensibly following the rules laid down by Ministers and not going in for retrospective changes.