HC Deb 03 July 1928 vol 219 cc1296-8

"(1) An individual who for any year of assessment is chargeable to Surtax may by giving notice in writing to the Special Commissioners not later than the first day of May next following the end of that year of his desire so to do, elect to make a return of his total income to those Commissioners, and any such election shall have effect not only as respects that year, but also as respects all subsequent years for which he remains chargeable to Surtax.

Provided that any individual who has so elected may at any time in any subsequent year of assessment give notice in writing to the Commissioners of his desire to revoke the election and thereupon the election shall cease to have effect except as respects any year preceding the year in which notice is so given.

(2) Where for any year of assessment an election made by an individual under this Section is in force—

  1. (a) the Special Commissioners may serve upon that individual a notice requiring him to make a return of his total income, and that individual shall make such a return in the form and within the time required by the notice, and Sub-sections (3) and (4) of Section forty-four of the Finance Act, 1927, shall apply in relation to any such return; and
  2. (b) the return required to be made by that individual under Sub-section (1) of Section forty-three of the Finance Act, 1927, of all the sources of his income and of the amount derived from each source for that year shall be limited to a return of any income which is assessable under either Schedule D or Schedule E."—[Sir H. Buckingham.]

Brought up, and read the First time.


I beg to move. "That the Clause be read a Second time."

The provision in regard to making one return for a particular income means that every taxpayer will have to make his returns from all sources to some local surveyor of taxes, but it has been pointed out that there is a certain number of people to whom it would be very inconvenient and unfair, and possibly injurious to their credit, if it were necessary for them to make a return of the whole of their income to a local inspector of taxes. Therefore, I am asking the Committee by this new Clause to give those Surtax payers who desire it the option of continuing to make, as they do at present, their returns of total income to the Special Commissioners of Taxes. It would certainly rather alter the actual position of one man, one return, but in these particular cases the result would be that one man would make two returns. He would make one return of his tax income to the Special Commissioners and he would make his return of income under Schedule D or Schedule E to some local inspector of taxes whom he may select from the various places where he may earn that income. I do not think that I need add anything more to recommend this Clause to the Committee, as I hope the desirability of it will be obvious.


The Inland Revenue inform me that no additional labour will be caused by allowing this option to taxpayers who wish to exercise it. It is quite true that it derogates slightly from the principle of one man, one return, but that principle was adopted for the convenience of the taxpayer, and if certain classes of taxpayers wish to go on making their returns, as they do now to Special Commissioners, because, for various reasons, they do not desire to disclose all their income to the local collector, there is no reason why that wish should not be met. The Inland Revenue are always anxious, as far as possible, in this extremely unpleasant duty of tax collection, to meet every wish and to cater for all tastes.

Clause read a Second time, and added to the Bill.