On 12 June, a timely article from Field Fisher says that businesses do not want to find themselves inadvertently falling foul of the corporate criminal offence in the UK of failure to prevent tax evasion under the Criminal Finances Act 2017. It warns that misuse of the UK furlough scheme will likely involve tax fraud as the scheme gives rise to an exemption for NIC (and accordingly tax will have been evaded). It is clearly important that businesses ensure their staff are properly trained on the requirements of the scheme and the eligibility criteria so they are not involved in fraudulent claims. It also warns that, with increased working from home, there is far less direct oversight and control of employees and ability to ensure the robust implementation of processes and controls, and the combination of external pressures and reduced oversight significantly increase the risks for business.
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