The Polish plumbers are saved. It may be remembered from the January Bulletin that Polish plumbers have a real problem if they come to the United Kingdom wearing a suit that has been purchased out of their foreign earnings whilst they were UK resident. This would represent the enjoyment in the United Kingdom (i.e., a remittance) of an asset purchased out of foreign earnings and would create an immediate charge to tax on that remittance.

There is an exemption provided by Section 809X in respect of clothing, footwear and jewellery purchased out of relevant foreign income for personal use. Unfortunately, relevant foreign income does not include foreign earnings – they are described as either relevant foreign earnings or foreign-specific employment income. (Do try to keep up.)

Help is at hand, because the Finance Bill extends the scope of the exemption in Section 809X to include property purchased out of foreign employment income.

Whilst this is, of course, welcome, it does not really solve the issues previously highlighted because the exemption is so narrowly drawn. Serious (and absurd) problems remain, which it is hoped will be addressed when this amendment is considered during the Parliamentary process.