Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Lessons from Barclays: tax avoidance is a choice, not a duty

From Tax Research, following our blog about Barclays axing back its tax abuse unit:
"There are lessons to be learned from this.
. . .
Companies are not required to minimise their tax bills: no one will be threatening Barclays with litigation for changing its policy. It is entirely legitimate for it to do so.
. . .
The Tax Justice Network and I have said this for years. It’s always and very obviously been true. But confirmation from Barclays was unexpected and welcome."
An important point. The converse of this, of course, is that directors do not have a straightforward duty to shareholders to minimise tax: they do not, and Barclays is saying they do not.

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