Pay-as-You-Earn

Part of Financial Statement – in the House of Commons on 25th April 1944.

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I must now refer briefly to a very important reform carried out during the past year by application of what we call "Pay-as-you-earn"on assessment and collection of tax on wages and salaries. The Committee will be glad to learn that all reports indicate that the new system has been successfully launched. This would be no mean feat at any time, but coming in war-time, when every additional item of work means so much to businesses that are short-staffed, I think the Committee will agree that our thanks are due to all concerned—workpeople, employers and Government staffs—for their co-operation in bringing the new system into force. In a measure such as this, which effects a revolution in the method of collecting tax from about 12,000,000 taxpayers, new difficulties and problems are bound to arise, but I have every confidence that after such a good start, and with the continued cooperation of employers and taxpayers themselves, the difficulties will be surmounted.