The “non-domicile” rule, which, as the Guardian points out, “allows many of Britain’s richest permanent residents to avoid paying tax in the UK on their worldwide income”, was introduced more than 200 years ago under the aegis of Pitt The Younger. So it is fitting that it is Mil The Younger who will today commit to ending what has become an arcane device for the obscenely overmonied to benefit Themselves Personally Now.
Guess who's setting the agenda once again?
The Guardian explains “Non-doms pay UK income tax and capital gains tax on their UK sources of income and gains, and whatever income generated overseas they choose to remit to the UK. By contrast, UK domiciles have to pay tax on all of their income and gains, wherever in the world they are made – Britain or overseas”. The way in which non-dom status is acquired is also a strange and arcane thing.
Labour claim that “those who have lived abroad and return to the UK can claim non-dom status simply on the basis of nothing more than a burial plot, a foreign bank account, or a father born abroad – and even an overseas newspaper subscription”. Some, it seems, contrive to inherit it. Miliband will, we are promised, commit to end it.
Here’s what he intends to say: “There are people who live here in Britain like you and me, work here in Britain like you and me, are permanently settled here in Britain like you and me, but aren’t required to pay taxes like you and me because they take advantage of what has become an increasingly arcane 200-year-old loophole. There are now 116,000 non-doms, costing hundreds of millions of pounds to our country. It can no longer be justified, and it makes Britain an offshore tax haven for a few.”
There is cross-party support: as the Guardian notes, Lib Dems like Vince Cable has long advocated abolition of non-dom status. But over at the Northcliffe House bunker, the opposition to the idea is already ramping up, at the behest of the legendarily foul mouthed Paul Dacre: “critics will say scrapping the status is another example of Labour's anti-business agenda, and will spark an exodus of rich investors from London to other European countries or the Far East”, Daily Mail readers have been told.
Well, look who's here, eh?
Tories, the Mail has reported, are opposed to the move, with Michael “Oiky” Gove warning “the policy would result in the Treasury losing revenue” (note that he does not defend the principle behind non-dom status). So why should the Mail be so opposed? After all, the Vagina Monologue, as far as is known, pays all his taxes in the UK.
Ah well. The ultimate owner of the Mail is Lord Rothermere. And he “claims hereditary non-dom status through his family’s French ancestry”. The owner of a paper that rails against all things European, and especially anything French, uses French heritage as a means of dodging tax. What a surprise. What an example to others. And what a 24-carat, gold plated, copper-bottomed, lousy stinking hypocrite.
Stuff the two million readers, think of the one boss. High principles - no change there, then.
I will bet that 99% or more of British citizens do not know what domicile means. Under the law of domicile everyone irrespective of where they were born has to take their domicile from their father. So if their father was born in Poland they too are domiciled in Poland. Notwithstanding some of the comments made it is extremely difficult to change your domicile to that of another state or country. Britain has not 116,000 non-doms it has millions. Every EU citizen or immigrant to Britain is technically a non-dom. me
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