Riding the tax rollercoaster

Giles Mooney and Tim Good provide guidance on navigating the complex field of personal tax calculations

When I started working in tax you could count on a major new topic every year – business asset taper relief, entrepreneurs’ relief, tax credits, A-day pension changes etc. but, as majorities have shrunk and backbench power has grown, Chancellors have been forced to tinker more subtly and either change things that are off the radar of average voters or, alternatively, things that sound tempting to the electorate. The changes to dividend tax, the starting savings rate band and the introduction of the personal savings allowance all meet that logic. However, while appealing to the section of the electorate Mr Osborne was keen to impress, it seemed very little thought had been given to policing, administering or applying the rules. What has followed is, quite simply, a shambles.