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Rangers FC v HMRC

The Supreme Court has now published its decision in the long running tax case involving Rangers Football Club. 

The case centred on whether payments to an Employee Benefit Trust set up by the club for the benefit of players and executives should be treated as earnings for tax purposes.  The case has ramifications for the many hundreds of companies who have used similar schemes over the last 20 years.  

The judges have unanimously found in favour of HMRC and, as the Supreme Court is the final arbiter, this is the end of the road for Rangers.  It is also likely to mean that HMRC will begin sending out “Follower Notices” to all companies with open enquiries into their EBT, requiring them to pay PAYE & NIC based on this decision.   If the company no longer exists, or has insufficient assets, HMRC may attempt to recover the tax from the directors of the company or the beneficiary of the trust.  

The precise technical position may differ between companies, and therefore if you are a director or owner of a company who has previously used an EBT, or are a beneficiary of an EBT, we would recommend that you contact us as soon as possible to discuss your options.  Please contact either Richard Coombs richardc@batesweston.co.uk or Craig Simpson craigs@batesweston.co.uk.

July 2017