HC Deb 12 February 1946 vol 419 cc174-5
54. General Sir George Jeffreys

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he will cause the methods of assessment to Income Tax, and particularly the methods of assessment under the P.A.Y.E. scheme, to be greatly simplified, so that Income Tax payers may be enabled to calculate without undue difficulty the amounts of tax due from them.

Mr. Dalton

I am studying this question. The amount of tax due under P.A.Y.E. can, of course, be ascertained from the Tax Tables. A considerable simplification will be effected next April, when two million taxpayers will become exempt.

Sir G. Jeffreys

Is the Chancellor aware of the delays that have occurred owing to the intricacies of the Income Tax Regulations as regards P.A.Y.E. taxpayers, and is he aware that one of the great complaints is that the amounts deducted vary, even though wages do not vary week by week?

Mr. Dalton

As I told the hon. and gallant Member, I am studying the question carefully. It is one we have inherited at the Treasury. I think that on balance there is no doubt that the P.A.Y.E. system is a great improvement on what went before, but there are complexities in it. We are seeing whether we cannot reduce these to the greatest possible extent, but it is a tricky business.

Captain Crookshank

Can the Chancellor say how the fact that there are to be 2,000,000 fewer taxpayers makes any difference in the way of simplification for those who still have to pay?

Mr. Dalton

I did not say "for those who still have to pay." It is a simplification for those who will not have to pay.