TRS Impact Statement

This was issued yesterday on gov.uk. There are some proposed mitigations and some interesting comments e.g. on penalties. There are however no mea culpas about the design flaw issues so often aired in this Forum. This kind of publication is not perhaps the appropriate means, although one suspects that for HMRC anywhere else would also be forum non conveniens. On the basis “Problems? What problems?”

Academics are still divided over whether a secret or half-secret trust is express or constructive. This has been relevant hitherto for formalities, notably, s53(2) LPA 1925, often in a tax context (stamp duty and imperfect gifts for IHT and CGT). It would be an insult to intelligence, mine not HMRC’s, for they have very little, to ask them what the position is for TRS. And not worth the effort, as they either do not respond to me at all or take 6 months and then either fail to answer the question or reveal the miniscule level of their technical understanding.

Jack Harper