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My 86 yr old mother has not declared foreign pension income

peter19
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2017 12:54 pm

My 86 yr old mother has not declared foreign pension income

Postby peter19 » Fri Sep 15, 2017 1:11 pm

My mum is 86 years old and has been getting a widow's pension from abroad for 20+ years.

She has recently received a letter from HMRC advising her that they are aware that she is receiving undeclared income and giving her the option to either disclose or confirm she has no liability.

She's also been given the option of using the Worldwide Disclosure Facility.

It was only by chance that I intercepted the letter as she has vision problems and cannot read any letters anymore-often she assumes it's junk mail and throws it away. I haven't told her about the letter just yet as the last 5 months she has had poor health and been on strong medication and I don't want to stress her out just yet until I find out more information.

Sorry-I think I'm blabbing on !

Anyway, I'm worried what will happen next. She hasn't deliberately tried to avoid paying tax as I believe she assumed it was either taxed at source or she genuinely didn't consider the possibility of having to declare it. I know. I know. That is no defence.

After reading up on this on the internet I couldn't sleep last night as I discovered that criminal proceedings could be made against her if HMRC believe she deliberately chose not to declare it not to mention large penalties, interest and the missing tax from the last 20 yrs + to be paid back.

I'm in the process of ringing a few local accountants to arrange a meeting but would welcome any advice.

maths
Posts: 7235
Joined: Wed Aug 06, 2008 3:25 pm

Re: My 86 yr old mother has not declared foreign pension income

Postby maths » Sat Sep 16, 2017 2:58 pm

You need to try to ascertain how much is mother's pension. This should appear regularly on her bank statements. Presumably she also receives some form of communication either monthly or at least annually from which you can gather information.

How did she end up with a pension from abroad?

Does she have any other overseas income? Has she any overseas bank accounts?

When did her husband die?

Given mother is 86 she won't be sent to prison and criminal proceedings are unlikely.

This information needs to be obtained before responding to HMRC's letter.

Assuming her only failure has been to notify HMRC about her overseas pension then I would suggest you write to HMRC on her behalf pointing out her failing health etc etc and providing the info' re the pension. You must not ignore the letter.

See what you can ascertain before seeking advice.

peter19
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2017 12:54 pm

Re: My 86 yr old mother has not declared foreign pension income

Postby peter19 » Sat Sep 16, 2017 5:27 pm

Hi

It's a sizeable amount !

The widow's pension is circa £ 9000 p.a. in addition to her UK state pension. Her husband died years ago (she's been receiving the pension for 20+ years !) I'm reading everything I can on the subject this last week so my understanding is she has 20+ years of undeclared income she now owes tax on !!

The letter states that a disclosure can be made via the Worldwide Disclosure Facility but I suspect my mother's age and health will be irrelevant to the HMRC.

darthblingbling
Posts: 104
Joined: Wed Aug 02, 2017 9:09 pm

Re: My 86 yr old mother has not declared foreign pension income

Postby darthblingbling » Tue Sep 19, 2017 10:54 pm

Which country is the pension sourced from?
Trainee tax professional working for a CTA/ATT qualified professional
damien@edaprof.co.uk
EDA Professional Services - UK/US Tax experts

peter19
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2017 12:54 pm

Re: My 86 yr old mother has not declared foreign pension income

Postby peter19 » Wed Sep 20, 2017 7:04 am

The United States

DavidTreitel
Posts: 171
Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2012 4:31 pm

Re: My 86 yr old mother has not declared foreign pension income

Postby DavidTreitel » Wed Sep 20, 2017 1:30 pm

Is she a US citizen or green card holder? Has she had withheld or paid US tax? Do you have an LPA or EPA for her? If not, does she have capacity still; or will you need the Court of Protection to step in to appoint you before you can act for her?

panlondon1
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Apr 24, 2018 11:37 pm

Re: My 86 yr old mother has not declared foreign pension income

Postby panlondon1 » Fri Apr 27, 2018 10:47 pm

Hi,

I wonder how you got on in the end. I may be in a similar situation not knowing have to declare tax and have received the disclosure letter. If you can pls give a quick summary of website steps and what other info they requested. Thanks.

peter19
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2017 12:54 pm

Re: My 86 yr old mother has not declared foreign pension income

Postby peter19 » Tue May 01, 2018 7:01 am

Hi

In the end I decided to employ a local tax specialist who did all the paperwork and calculations for us.

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