Our team are all members of one or more of the following professional bodies:
- Chartered Institute of Taxation
- Association of Tax Technicians
- Association of Accounting Technicians
Anton Lane is recognised within the industry as a specialist and writes regularly for industry journals (links open in a new tab/window):
Anton is the author of The Practical Enquiries Manual published by CCH as well as contributing to the Annotated Finance Act handbook published by Lexis Nexis since 2015.
We regularly seek constructive comments from our clients to identify how we can improve our service.
A few months ago and out of the blue, I received an enquiry letter from HMRC’s Affluent and Wealthy team. I immediately contacted Anton at Edge Tax as I’ve known for several years.
My wife received an identical enquiry sometime later. Edge Tax considered HMRC’s request and explained to us that responding to one request would eventually lead to a series of further requests.
Edge explained that whilst it was necessary to respond to the request, to do so without pre-empting HMRC’s response and further requests would inevitably lead to increased professional costs and inconvenience. Given I had known Anton for a number of years, I appreciated and trusted his comments.
The plan was to discuss the situation with HMRC and manage a full response, which was going to be complicated given it would potentially involve several connected offshore excluded property settlements, our non-domiciled/non-residency status as well as realisation of income and gains, double taxation agreements, unsuccessful investments plus a managed portfolio over a period of fifteen years.
We involved our professional fee insurers who have their own team of advisers. Edge Tax discussed the enquiry as far as it had progressed with them and the suggested approach. Our insurers felt the response to the enquiry may be too complicated for them and agreed for Edge to proceed with representations although these were to be limited to answering the questions raised by HMRC. Edge explained that this approach was not in the nature of cooperating and the collaborative approach that should be adopted with HMRC and it was subsequently agreed a full response be provided.
Edge has so far demonstrated exceptional foresight and adopted an open and practical approach working with our insurers. We have both really valued the extra lengths our team at Edge have gone to and the level of professionalism they demonstrate at every step!
We were formally advised by a top ten professional services firm over a number of years implementing remuneration planning. That planning has been subject to HMRC enquiry under code of practice 8 and more recently accelerated payment notices issued. Edge Tax became involved because we desired an independent view on how best to resolve the disputed position with HMRC as well as manage the APNs. Edge Tax reviewed a significant amount of primary information and adopted a commercial approach when setting out the options to us.
It was felt that the planning could give rise to a PAYE charge and Edge explored the technical application of ITEPA and PAYE regulations to ascertain whether the company or its directors would be liable. Edge also considered the anti-avoidance legislation applying to transfer of assets abroad and whether HMRC could use this as a secondary argument to seek recovery of taxes from individuals. The purpose was not to avoid settlement with HMRC but to understand the challenges and address these directly with HMRC to find a solution given HMRC limited approach to settlements where avoidance schemes are used.
Edge Tax also made representations to HMRC following the issue of APNs and systematically followed up responses when HMRC did not answer the representations. Edge predicted the approach from HMRC, which indicated to us that they are aware of practical issues in dealing with tax risks as well as having an excellent technical knowledge. We find Edge to be commercial and practical in their approach – they will always explain the different options, solutions and risks, which in today’s tax environment is absolutely necessary!
My wife and I were shocked to receive a letter from HMRC enclosing code of practice 9. We accepted that we needed to make a full disclosure over a long period of time and Edge Tax put us at ease managing the process for us. HMRC were keen to meet and whilst we were not, it was felt appropriate. Edge Tax prepared us for the meeting and sat in the meeting to assist manage it. The whole event whilst daunting was not actually that bad!
We did not think our affairs were complicated until HMRC indicated that they were considering whether sponsorship expenditure was allowable. The expense related to a racing team I ran although it helped develop my other business interest. Edge Tax put forward significant technical arguments towards a very resistant HMRC. Whilst Edge Tax are still in negotiation with HMRC, they have made some progress to a compromise on this point which is a significant relief.
I met with Anton of Edge regarding a loan settlement opportunity with HMRC. I was unsure of whether it was suitable or not to enter into the arrangements although Edge were able to explain the technical issues in an understandable manner (as far as tax goes), which helped me make the decision to enter into settlement. It took longer than anticipated due to changes with case workers in HMRC although Edge kept me informed of movements, which alleviated some concern. Eventually, we were able to obtain traction with HMRC and the settlement was relatively quick to be agreed.
Edge helped sort out a contract loan settlement for me, which was a little more unusual given I had left the UK. However, I was more than willing to sort out my tax affairs although had only some of the relevant information. Edge were able to commercially make representations to HMRC which resulted in a satisfactory conclusion.
Edge have been engaged to resolve tax irregularities arising mainly from a business I was involved with. However, due to my cultural background there are a number of transactions that needed careful handling where family and community members pooled resources to fund various business activities. Edge demonstrated a knowledge and experience of the cultural circumstances and have been able to explain to HMRC the background to transactions in a manner to preserve integrity. The disclosure has been fraught with many problems in order that the main business continues to operate which has meant ongoing negotiations with HMRC to offset CIS and VAT and release payments to the business so it can maintain cash flow and continue to operate, thereby being capable of settling liabilities with HMRC. This investigation has cause me significant personal distress although Edge have tried their upper most to be professional whilst managing my anxiety.
Edge helped us with a tricky situation involving an EBTSO, where our accountant and Inspector had not managed to agree the position by the deadline causing much frustration and anxiety. We appointed Edge to negotiate post the EBTSO closure, which transpired to be very difficult as HMRC policy on treatment was not forthcoming. Edge did their uppermost to support us throughout and alleviate our concerns. When finally HMRC did respond, Edge were quick to bring discussions to the table with HMRC and agree a basis of settlement not too distant from the EBTSO. In addition, they did their best to manage our expectations for settlement. We appreciate very much the extra mile Edge went to, in particular taking our out of office calls and being available at weekends to discuss the settlement and HMRC’s position. Without Anton Lane’s help with guiding us through this stressful process we doubt the matter would have been resolved so easily.
My husband and I were introduced to Edge Tax by our accountant following receiving an enquiry letter. Edge were quick to identify that the questions HMRC were asking indicated that our business turnover was incorrectly declared and that there may be property income also not declared. We met with Anton Lane and explained that due to my husband’s dyslexia our record keeping was not always up together. Anton was able to explain where HMRC obtain information from and the consequences of not disclosing irregularities to them. We accepted that we should enter a full disclosure. Edge have demonstrated both technical expertise as well as a commercial approach to handling the disclosure having proactively approached HMRC and met with them on our behalf, which alleviated a lot of concern we had.
Edge has continued this year to deliver their tax services in a most professional manner with clear and concise communication either by phone, electronic, written format or face to face and with a fast response; if they cannot respond within 24 hours, they will provide a response timescale. We have used Dave and his team extensively this year to help us assess the robustness of our employment tax processes and policies. This has allowed us to implement improvements to our current arrangements which we believe will, going forward, help to reduce the risk of a PAYE audit by HMRC and enable us to generally manage our costs in this area much more effectively.
I have continued to receive excellent advice from Edge Tax across a wide range of technical subjects both when working within a business and also as a personal client. They are proactive, providing a clear explanation of issues together with available options enabling an objective assessment to be made.
I approached Edge on the recommendation of my friend Tim [Surname], who had also used their services. Anton initially set out a detailed list of information he would require to consider the potential tax irregularities. Anton quickly identified the irregularities, which had arisen from poor advice from my bank. A draft disclosure report was prepared within three weeks of me engaging Edge although it became apparent that they needed to review the trustee’s records due to a number of inconsistencies between the accounts and legal documents. Anton suggested that I provide him with a mandate and he deal directly with the trustees. He appeared to develop a good rapport with the managing director at [offshore trustees] and was able to visit their offices and review files. The disclosure then proceeded quickly and effortlessly, which is not what I anticipated at the outset!
Following my father’s death, I was totally shocked to discover that our solicitor had structured our family money in a legally convoluted manner and even more shocked to discover we had historic tax liabilities. My mother was distraught. We were introduced to Edge by a financial adviser and found Anton to quickly grasp the family’s wishes, explain the legal problems and why tax had arisen. Edge set out a proposed plan to review and tell the taxman. The plan moved due to Anton discovering new information and the solicitor being less than helpful, although Edge has always kept us informed. The whole ordeal of having to make a disclosure to the taxman would have been a lot more terrifying if it wasn’t for Anton.
I have found the accessibility of the Partners at Edge unprecedented, which, in the circumstances alleviated a lot of the fears I was dealing with. I often spoke with Anton in the late evening to discuss progress. Unfortunately for Anton, I often had to call him the following morning! At least he was normally available or contacted me immediately with an estimated time to return my call – brilliant service, thank you!
I have worked with Anton Lane and the Edge Tax people for several years. During this period of time I have been constantly impressed with the up to date knowledge, service and attention that Edge has provided.
I think that the main differentiator is the fact that the primary focus has always been on how tax changes specifically affect the well being of my companies and what if anything we can do both now and in the future. Edge are proactive in trying to find the best solutions vrs just reactive administrators. They are only a small firm but they think big and execute.
As a specialist tax practice ourselves it is important for us to align ourselves with businesses in other tax areas to enable us to support the broader needs of our clients. Edge Tax provide employment, corporate and employment taxes support for us. They match our vision of providing a proactive and solutions based response to our clients with a focus on preserving and developing strong client relationships.
I have obtained excellent advice from Edge Tax across a wide range of technical subjects both when working within a business and also as a personal client. They are proactive, providing a clear explanation of issues together with available options enabling an objective assessment to be made.
We have worked with Edge Tax on a couple of client issues, including one rather contentious one. Edge have been efficient and practical in their approach to manage both expectations but also negotiate a solution to tax irregularities. We have built a good working relationship. We look forward to members from Edge supporting our discussion based lunches where we explore technical issues. We have also been pleased to ask Anton Lane of Edge Tax to present on HMRC’s approach to investigations and associate subjects such as accelerated payment notices. Edge always offer valuable contributions to our professional network.
We have a significant number of relationships with accountants and other professional advisers who we provide varied services to. Over the past few years many have faced increasingly difficult situations with HMRC, whether clients with accelerated payment notices, employee benefit trusts that were not included with the settlement opportunity or escalating enquiries. We have always been happy to refer Edge to our intermediary base given their excellent pedigree and ability to manage relations between advisers and clients in quite difficult circumstances. It does help that Edge is headed up by Anton, whose name attaches to a number of published articles and this assists to reassure clients of Edges’ calibre.
Edge Tax has supported William Price & Co over the past year assist clients with both contentious tax issues as well as dispute resolution both with HMRC and professional advisers. We have been impressed with their practical approach to managing situations as well as technical resourcefulness.
Edge Tax assisted to resolve a dispute involving a client and two professional advisers. The dispute involved the taxation of a director’s loan account and distribution in specie following a members voluntary liquidation. The area is technically challenging and Edge have demonstrated a good knowledge of the relatively new legislation as well as company law, insolvency procedures and accounting treatment. The dispute was resolved to the satisfaction of all parties and Edge provided further technical advice dealing with HMRC enquiries into the transactions.
In another situation, Edge Tax challenged significant penalties applied for a VAT error corrected on a subsequent return which should have been separately disclosed by the client. Edge put forward an aggressive stance on what constituted an unprompted disclosure within the meaning of the legislation in conflict to the position of the Inspector relying on the definition contained in HMRC manuals. After several technical discussions with HMRC, Edge adopted a practical approach and proposed a methodology for the company to audit future VAT returns enabling HMRC to suspend the penalty.
Edge Tax also assisted on another penalty situation arising for a client who adjusted their PAYE pursuant to choosing to pay a dividend. They managed to argue the quantum of the potential lost revenue to be significantly different to that proposed by HMRC as well as a reasonable excuse argument. HMRC waived the penalty in the entirety.
We have built a strong relationship with Edge and when we speak to intermediaries, potential clients and clients alike, we are pleased to be able to promote their services.
Technical knowledge and many years of expertise, combined with a sense of humour and a personable nature, means Anton’s material is relevant and readable to a wide and varied audience. It is therefore highly publishable.
Edge Tax have assisted our accountancy practice to manage client tax risks with excellent results. Edge has also assisted us improve our analysis of professional and client risks. We are very grateful for their continued support and quite enjoy the entertaining and technically useful newsletters!
Leonard Curtis have worked with Edge Tax on a mutual client and have found them to provide a commercial approach to resolving issues with HMRC. We have also found Edge to be conscious of managing personal relationships so as to limit any reputational damage and anxiety. We have also held a number of seminars with Edge, where they have presented on the information available to HMRC and how they identify risks. The seminars were well attended and exceptionally well received. We are glad to continue our working relationship with Edge.