Syllabus A6. Value Added Tax A6b. Principal sources of revenue law and practice

A6b. The overall structure of the UK tax system

Syllabus A6b)

Principal sources of revenue law and practice


Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs

This controls all aspects of tax law in the UK

Purpose of HMRC

  1. Make sure there is money available to fund public spending

  2. Help families and individuals who need financial support

HMRC Main Duties:

  1. Implement the tax laws

  2. Oversee the tax admin

Miscellaneous HMRC stuff

  • Staff are known as "Officers of Revenue and Customs"

  • Branches are all over UK

  • Most taxpayers never deal with HMRC direct - instead they file their tax returns online and pay electronically (compulsory for companies)

  • The responsibility for assessing how much tax is payable is down to the taxpayer under a system called "self - assessment". 

    Individuals can still ask HMRC to calculate the tax though for them - companies can't

Structure of the UK tax system

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC)

The treasury formally imposes and collects taxation. 

The management of the treasury is the responsibility of the Chancellor of the Exchequer. 

The administration function for the collection of tax is undertaken by HMRC


At the head of HMRC are the commissioners whose duties are:

  1. To implement statue law

  2. Oversee the process of UK tax administration

The main body of HMRC is divided into District offices and Accounting and payment offices

District Offices

The Commissioner appoints Officers of HMRC to implement the day to day work of HMRC

Accounts and payment offices

These concentrate on the collection and payment of tax.