The First-tier Tribunal have ruled in favour of HMRC in respect of a preliminary issue concerning appeals against the SDLT due under failed avoidance schemes (Brosch and Anor v HMRC  UKFTT 945 (TC)).
The preliminary issue to be determined was was that, assuming all the appellants notified HMRC in writing (within the meaning of paragraph 30(4)(c)(ii) of Schedule 10 to the Finance Act 2003 (FA 2003)) by means of a standard form disclosure note that included the wording quoted by HMRC (or wording to very similar effect), could a hypothetical officer have been reasonably expected to be aware of the loss of tax (within the meaning of paragraph 30(3) of Schedule 10 to FA 2003) in the Appellants’ SDLT Returns in respect of their use of what has come to be known to HMRC as the Jeepster or Hummer scheme?
The tribunal concluded:
“Therefore, at best, I consider that the information provided in the SDLT1 returns and Disclosure Note might have prompted a hypothetical officer to raise an enquiry. But, as is clear from Sanderson at , that is not enough for me to conclude that that the information provided would have been such that a hypothetical officer could have been reasonably expected to be aware of an insufficiency or loss of tax. It therefore follows that HMRC’s primary argument succeeds.”
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