Part 10 of the Finance Bill 2016, contains three new proposed criminal offences aimed at tackling tax evasion.
The new offences criminalise failure to (1) give notice of liability to income or capital gains tax, (2) provide a return or (3) make an accurate return. These offences will be strict liability offences which means that it will not be necessary for the Crown to prove an intention to evade tax on the part of the taxpayer.
The new criminal offences will apply only if the tax liability in question exceeds the threshold amount, which will be set by HM Treasury in regulations and must not be less than £25,000.
HMRC has confirmed that the new offences will not take effect before April 2017 at the earliest.
The Finance Bill 2016 is available to view here.