Clause 97 - Calculation of income tax liability for certain charges relating to pensions

Finance (No. 2) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 10:00 am on 11 January 2022.

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Question proposed, That the clause stand part of the Bill.

Photo of Lucy Frazer Lucy Frazer The Financial Secretary to the Treasury

Clause 97 is the third of three clauses relating to HMRC’s tax administration provisions. The clause makes minor technical revisions to the provisions for the calculation of income tax in respect of certain pension charges.

Section 23 of the Income Tax Act 2007 sets out the steps to be followed when calculating income tax liability. At step 7, additional amounts of tax that have not been taken into account in the earlier steps are added to the calculation, and those are listed in section 30. The list in section 30 includes a number of freestanding tax charges relating to registered pension schemes.

The Committee will remember that clause 96 operated on those freestanding charges to provide certainty that taxpayers liable for them must notify their liability to HMRC. The Government have identified the fact that some of those freestanding charges—some of the unauthorised payment charges and surcharges, and the overseas transfer charge—have been omitted from the list in section 30, so we are taking this opportunity to correct that by adding them.

Clause 97 adds to the list in section 30 the overseas transfer charge and the missing unauthorised payments charge and surcharges. The charges ensure that the correct amount of tax due in respect of those charges is produced at the correct step of the tax calculation. The effect is to ensure that HMRC will be able consistently to calculate and assess tax liabilities in respect of those pension charges. In combination with clause 96, clause 97 requires taxpayers to notify HMRC of their liability for the charges, and HMRC will be able to charge penalties for failure to notify and will use discovery assessments to recover tax that has not been notified. Clause 97 is introduced with prospective effect only from the 2021-22 tax year.

Clause 97 makes minor technical revisions and, together with the changes in clauses 95 and 96, gives consistency and certainty of tax treatment in HMRC’s tax administration provisions relating to those freestanding tax charges. I commend the clause to the Committee.

Photo of Abena Oppong-Asare Abena Oppong-Asare Shadow Exchequer Secretary (Treasury)

I thank the Minister for her explanation. As she mentioned, clause 97 follows on from clauses 95 and 96, and is a chiefly technical clause to amend the list of other income tax charges in subsection 30(1) of the Income Tax Act 2007. The Labour party will not oppose the clause.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause 97 accordingly ordered to stand part of the Bill.