HMRC tax investigators share £1.4 million bonus pot

HMRC is so pleased with the work carried out by its tax investigators that it has paid out more than £1.4 million in bonuses to them over the last four years.

Accountants may be interested to learn that the Press Association recently explained that HMRC had two different bonus schemes in place for its officials taking part in criminal investigations.

The first is a performance award that is determined by the work conducted over the year and the second, which is not applicable to senior civil service members, is a bonus in recognition of exceptional performance during the year.

David Gauke, the Treasury minister, revealed the information in a written response to a question from Priti Patel, one of the Tory backbenchers. He also said bonuses were based on the work carried out in the previous year.

£379,656 was paid out in 2008/09 for work carried out in 2007/08. In 2009/10, HMRC paid out £435,689. This dropped down to £349,168 the following year and so far this financial year, a total of £275,326 has been paid to investigators who participated in criminal investigations. However, the figure for this year does not include the recognition bonus, which will not be available until the financial year-end.

Mr Gauke went on to explain that the Revenue has a bonus pot of 0.47% of the delegated grades salary bill for the year 2012/13, but as usual bonuses will depend on individual performance. The Treasury cannot provide bonus forecasts after 2013 because of ongoing reforms to the civil service reward system.

As the Government tries to balance the books, HMRC investigators are becoming increasingly involved in criminal cases surrounding tax evasion. With more taskforces on the way, the Revenue might find itself paying out even more “rewards.”

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