Employee Bonus Schemes: Growth Securities Ownership Plan (GSOP) tax avoidance and similar schemes
Tax Agents with clients who have used such schemes may be interested in a recent decision by the First-tier Tribunal (FTT).
Many users of GSOP schemes have already settled their liabilities, but a minority are seeking to challenge HMRC’s view of the scheme in the FTT. The Tribunal has decided that two appeal cases, which were the most advanced in the litigation process, should proceed as lead cases, with all other similar appeals being put on hold pending a decision. This means the Tribunal’s final decision on lead cases will be binding on all similar appeals, unless they can be distinguished.
The Tribunal’s decision will not have any impact on HMRC’s ability to negotiate with those who wish to settle their affairs, whether their case is before the tribunal or not. HMRC will continue to issue determinations to users of the scheme for the tax we believe is due.
Once a final decision is reached, it will not impact on HMRC’s ability to issue follower notices and accelerated payment notices in relation to related appeals.
If your clients are involved in this type of tax arrangement and want to discuss how they can withdraw from their scheme and settle their tax liability, please get in touch.