HMRC signal their intent by arresting ‘ghost’ plumbers

Five plumbers have been arrested across the UK for failing to declare all their income to HMRC. 

HMRC has stated that it intends to undertake more raids shortly, after giving people in the plumbing and heating industry the opportunity to put their affairs in order via the Plumbers Tax Safe Plan (PTSP), launched in March 2011.

In addition to the arrests, HMRC confirms it is investigating 600 hundred other individuals who it believes have not declared all their income. 

HMRC was tasked this year with a fivefold increase in the number of criminal prosecutions it undertakes and suggest this is the merely the start. 

How this affects you and your clients

It is not too late for people that have not kept their tax affairs up to date to make a voluntary disclosure to HMRC.  The main benefits are:

  • immunity from criminal prosecution;
  • the opportunity to settle the tax and interest due on the undeclared income; and
  • minimising the penalty charged on the additional tax payable.

Plumbers can no longer register of the PTSP; however, similar terms are available to people who make a voluntary disclosure to HMRC for any direct and indirect taxes that are due.

How Gabelle can help

We specialise in assisting accountants and their clients who wish to bring their tax affairs are up to date or are being investigated by HMRC.  We are able to advise on the best way of making a disclosure to HMRC, how to quantify the tax arrears, minimising the penalty loading and dispute resolution.

Please contact John Hood on 020 7182 4747 or via email on for further details how we can help.