Tax Office Targets eBay And Amazon Traders
UK sellers on eBay and Amazon who do not declare their taxable earnings are facing heavy fines, after the tax office launched a new campaign.
The warning comes as an amnesty offered by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) ceases.
HMRC targeting of professional sellers who are behind in their tax payments will be made to repay with penalties.
The orders would make sellers pay the tax owed, along with interest and fines up to the full amount of the total.
HMRC has sent out more than 30,000 notification letters and trading sites have been asked to supply officials with details of the sellers.
Authorities are cross-referencing self-assessment data on taxpayers with details from the websites.
HMRC said: "If you owe tax and don't get in contact by the deadline, do not assume that HMRC will not catch up with you soon.
"It's better to come to us before we come to you."
Tax consultants have advised, however, that the targeting programme is not aimed at people selling personal items cleared out of lofts or garages.
To date the voluntary amnesty has brought more than £500m additional funds into tax office coffers.
The increased scrutiny of online traders comes just a day after eBay executive Devin Wenig unveiled a new logo to be rolled out.
He said the redesign reflected a shift by the online site away from auctions and collectibles toward full-priced, buy-it-now merchandise.
The strategic shift is the latest in a series of incremental changes brought in by eBay as it seeks to maximise profit.
However, critics of the changes have pointed out that the site is now swamped with dozens of similar items on offer by traders.
Others complain that foreign sellers now appear on domestic eBay sites and the automatic "best match" feature.
what do you think?
pity they can't apply the same resources to the companies who avoid paying BILLIONS in tax....
It's easier to pick on the little people, as the big companies have smart accountants. They are a joke :O((
Chasing pounds instead of the millions and in some cases billions salted away by the big corporations and companies. I guess they have to make the figures look good somehow. I can not believe they just ignore the real culprits because it is too hard for them to catch and get the money owed to them. It may be that they are trying to avoid a closer examination of their dealings. It does look as though they have taken an easy option. If they owe tax that is one thing and their is nothing wrong in chasing it. But to let the big boys get away with it is a bit much
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Picking on the little guy while the big fish blatantly fiddle millions in tax - time they got their priorities right
Just get the missus to open a bank account in Monaco, and pay all the dosh in there! It works for some, so I'm led to believe!!
Or Jersey or the Isle of Man (now re-named the Isle of Woman for tax evasion purposes only of course!)
And yet they can write off multi-millions of pounds off the big boys tax bills over a cosy lunch. The small crooks go to jail, the big crooks go to the House of Lords.
dont you find it amazing that the tax office yet again pick on the small people who are just making money to survive while those who have millions are left alone the hmrc are so quick wanting the taxes paid ever tried getting a refund out of them they say about paying penalties and the interest owed on the back taxes well it should work both ways when owed taxes back maybe we as people should tell the hmrc that we want them to be penalised for taking to much tax and also paid any intetest that has been made on the taxes money overpaid to them given back then see how they like that
Typical ebay 'Power seller' may easily have a turnover in the 100's of thousands, they aren't just playing at it! Vat fraud probably comes into it as well?
Wow 500 million in recovered tax, without naming names there are companies Who avoid paying much more than this in a single year. Easy targets without Recourse to expensive tax avoidance lawyers.S.O.S