British Ebay traders have been given one week by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) to come clean about their earnings. If they come clean about their income before the 14th of June and the crackdown they could see a reduction in their penalties.
Ebay and other online marketplaces have been a honeypot until now for people to earn money without paying tax. Last month the HMRC sent letters to over 30,000 people who could have potentially evaded tax payments for internet sales.
The clampdown by the HMRC will be targeting people who trade on a huge level, mainly as businesses so people selling a few personal items need not worry. Ebay traders are just one of several targets in a new tax clampdown, others include market traders and taxi drivers. The HMRC is hoping to recoup millions of pounds in unpaid income tax.
In May, eBay and Amazon were ordered to surrender tens of thousands of members’ details to as part of the crackdown. Marian Wilson, head of HMRC Campaigns, said: ‘We want to make it easy for online marketplace traders to contact us and register their intention to take part in the campaign. If you owe tax and don’t get in contact, do not assume that HMRC will not catch up with you soon. It’s better to come to us before we come to you.’
If you aren’t sure if your internet selling could be seen as trading, you can find out more about the e-marketplace campaign on the HMRC website. If you want to make a voluntary disclosure you must contact the HMRC by 14th June using the forms on their website or by calling them. You will then have until 14th September to give details of the tax money owed and arrange for full payment to be made.
After the 14th June HMRC will be contacting people that it believes owes income tax but haven’t come forward. These people could face penalties of up to 100% of the tax owed and in worst cases prosecution.