As all should know – because he tells us of this often enough – Richard Murphy is a founder and unpaid director of the Fair Tax Mark. This is a system by which you slip them your accounts and a fee – do not forget the fee – and they tell you whether, or that, you are being moral in your payment of taxes.
Note they don’t say that you’re obeying the law. They say instead that you’re doing what they think you should be doing.
Well, OK, we’re proper liberals around here, whatever floats the boats of consenting adults. If their opinion is valuable to you by all means pay for it.
It’s just that their opinion might not be worth all that much.
Newark Osteopaths joins a growing list of companies that have achieved the Fair Tax Mark, putting them alongside AMT Coffee, The Co-op, Lush Cosmetics, Richer Sounds, Scotmid, and Unicorn Grocery.
Richard Livings, Project Manager of the Fair Tax Mark said: “We are delighted to welcome Newark Osteopaths to the Fair Tax Mark, the UK’s accreditation scheme for businesses paying their fair share of corporation tax and reporting on their practices transparently. Today’s announcement means Newark Osteopaths are giving their customers a certified promise that their tax practices are at the leading edge of best practice.”
“Recent scandals where companies have been exposed as tax avoiders have resulted in boycotts and outrage. It’s vital that companies of all sizes stand up and show that paying their fair share is important, and it is great that Newark Osteopaths have done so. The Fair Tax Mark is a positive way for consumers to easily identify responsible businesses; companies that pay what they should, not what they can get away with.”
We’re entirely happy to share this news with you. We would point out that there’s a certain mystification as to how this Fair Tax Mark was awarded. For, as we’re told:
— голубая бурма (@blue_burmese) March 14, 2018
The problem with that being this from Richard Murphy:
What is the cost of individual tax avoidance?
This figure is best estimated by considering the main techniques that individuals use
to avoid tax. These are as follows.
1. Income is reallocated to a person or entity that has a lower tax rate than the
individual whose activity really generates the income. The people or entities to
whom the income is diverted might be:
a. other members of a person’s family e.g. a spouse or child
b. a trust for the benefit of a person’s family
c. a company owned by the individual but taxed at lower rates than those they
might enjoy personally
d. an offshore company or trust (this mainly applies to those not domiciled in
the UK – more explanation of domicile is available in the Glossary).
2. Changing the location of a transaction. This is much easier for those not
domiciled in the UK than for those who are so domiciled. In both cases, however,
the opportunity exists to relocate a transaction out of the UK, if a commercial
justification for doing so can be created.
3. Changing the nature of a transaction so that it appears to be something different
from what it actually is. This is commonplace, the most popular tactics being to:
a. convert income into capital gains, which are almost always taxed at lower rates
b. convert earned income into unearned income such as dividends to avoid
National Insurance charges that only apply to earned income
c. income is paid by way of benefits in kind that are taxed at less than their
d. split income in small businesses so that VAT registration does not have to
In other reports and comments Murphy has insisted that paying a nominal income subject to the normal income tax and national insurance charges, then extracting profits as dividends, is tax abuse. Yet an organisation doing exactly this is apparently awarded the Fair Tax Mark.
I think that’s interesting, don’t you?