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Advice from the horse’s mouth

In a recent article for Tax Adviser magazine, Assistant Director at SAV, Mike Fowler made some suggestions as to how taxpayers could make the experience of agreeing a share, goodwill or other intangible asset valuation with SAV, if not a pleasurable, then at least a less-frustrating experience.

In the year to April 2014, SAV logged 14,000 cases referred to it by local HMRC offices for further expert consideration. Of these roughly 20% are taken up for negotiation with a very small number being the subject of litigation, generally small cases where SAV considers the taxpayer to be wrong and large cases where experts disagree.

Mike’s top tip to smooth the way: to increase the likelihood of a proposed valuation being accepted quickly, supply a short, focused valuation report. Information is key, his quote. Relevant and accurate information, well-presented is key, our quote.

In his experience difficulties arise for two main reasons:

• Delay and poor communication between SAV and the taxpayer and his or her advisers
• Prolonged negotiations which prevent the case progressing

SAV will take action to resolve what it views as taxpayer intransigence by prompt use of its information powers and enforcement of reply by dates and moving cases where an impasse has been reached quickly to the first-tier tribunal.

Make a possibly difficult task much easier – prepare well and if in doubt, consult a specialist.