asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if building societies who are required to supply details of individual holdings in their societies to the Inland Revenue are made aware that the information, supplied for averaging purposes, can be and is used for the purpose of checking individual holdings, and can lead to prosecutions against members.
Is it not a fact that very few members of building societies or depositors are aware of it? If this information is to be obtained, ought it not to be obtained, not in this underhanded way, but under Section 29 of the 1952 Act?
In fact, very much wider information could be obtained under Section 29. There is nothing underhand about the way this information is obtained. It is quite well known that returns have to be made in order to determine the composite rate. When the information is obtained, it has to be linked with the particular taxpayer's individual file for purposes of calculating the rate. If it is found that the taxpayer has not disclosed some of his income, it is the duty of the Revenue to investigate it.
The object of the exercise is not to obtain information about non-disclosure, but if such information comes to light then it is the duty of the Revenue to investigate it.