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Northern Ireland Office: Agencies

Volume 704: debated on Tuesday 21 October 2008

asked Her Majesty's Government:

In respect of which Northern Ireland Office agencies and related organisations the Northern Ireland Office over the past three years has (a) paid tax for which members of the organisation's board were liable; and (b) specified that members of the organisation's board must pay their own taxes directly. [HL5398]

The Northern Ireland Office made a tax payment in respect of members of the Parades Commission. This followed a ruling by HM Revenue and Customs that they should be considered as office holders and should therefore have been paid via the departmental payroll (with tax being deducted from their remuneration at source), rather than receiving gross payments. The tax payment covered the period up to 2005. This does not indicate that any moneys in relation to tax were owed by the commissioners.

Following the HMRC ruling, all agencies and related organisations were informed that individuals appointed as office holders must be paid via payroll to ensure deductions in relation to income tax and national insurance contributions were made at source.