Tuesday, August 9, 2011

The best tax advice you will ever hear

The best tax advice you will ever hear is that: "It's more complicated than it seems."

It's not what you want to hear of course. And, to be fair, it isn't true for every person in every situation. But, it IS worth bearing in mind when someone offers you unsolicited tax advice that seems to be too good to be true.

Whenever someone promises you fantastic tax savings, that you can avoid paying tax on your income or that the taxman will never know, BEWARE. You will invariably end up worse off if you act on the basis of what I am calling PMA Tax (Popular Misconceptions About Tax).

Even the simple 'best tax advice you will ever hear' that I wanted to share in this blogpost is in danger of getting complicated. I've written many time before about tax avoidance schemes and will refrain from getting sidetracked down that path today.

All too often the tax advice shared by amateurs proves the truth of that old adage that 'a little knowledge is a dangerous thing'.

Simplistic PMA Tax advice is often shared by people who are unaware that the tax rules are more complicated than they realise. They only know part of the story. They are unaware of the caveats that should accompany their views; thus, if acted on, their naive tax advice will cause more problems than it solves.

I will be sharing some examples of PMA Tax in future blogposts and wanted to provide some background first.


  1. The quickest, and surest way, for everyone to save tax is simple. Report tax abuse to the hotline whenever you come across it. Whether it be your local cafe, newsagent or friend who boasts he is not paying tax, or most commonly the tradesman who advertises on lamp posts using a telephone number.
    If the 'tradesman' states he can come only after 5PM or at the weekend, he has a daytime job and is avoiding tax.
    The more tax the cheats avoid, the more the honest taxpayr has to pay!

  2. "The more tax the cheats avoid, the more the honest taxpayr has to pay!"

    Err no Hugh, thats not how the tax system works. Perhaps you should seek professional advice.