The Liechtenstein Disclosure Facility (LDF) is not the catchiest title but it will be of some importance to certain people. The LDF was created as a facility to enable UK taxpayers with undisclosed foreign assets to regularise their historic tax position with HMRC without fear of prosecution or a complete loss of the assets being disclosed. It has been running for a number of years, with various modifications along the way and has been HMRC’s most successful disclosure facility in terms of additional revenues for the exchequer and has brought peace of mind to many taxpayers.
The facility is to close on 31 December 2015 and, as with the EBT Settlement Opportunity which closed in March of this year, it has to be expected that this is a real deadline for registering under the scheme with HMRC.
The surprising thing to learn though is that use of the facility is not limited to those who hold undisclosed assets in Liechtenstein or even assets held abroad. The facility can be used by anyone wishing to regularise their affairs even in relation to purely UK tax matters.
Who particularly should consider this?
- Individuals and families with historic offshore issues who want to put their affairs in order for future generations
- Businesses that have diverted profits overseas, whether as a company, partnership or sole trader
- UK resident non-domiciled individuals who have concerns about whether they have correctly applied the remittance rules historically
- Executors and trustees in certain circumstances
What do I do now?
Anyone who thinks this may be of relevance to them should take advice as soon as possible. The terms of settlement under the facility are not as generous as in previous years, but are certainly preferable to HMRC later discovering an undisclosed source of income. With all the increased exchange of information between countries, including territories who historically have been reluctant to share information with foreign fiscal authorities, it is to be expected that more prosecutions will follow in the future for anyone who has continued to choose not to disclose. Come and talk to us at Burgis & Bullock and we can help you consider what your options are and what action you should take. Call today on 0845 177 5500 or contact us on-line.